If you call me on Tuesday, I am likely to not pick up my phone, same goes for Wednesday morning. Those are days I normally do quite some work and finish things that should be finished, it is really a moment of getting things done for me. Somebody I spoke with last week was completely flabbergasted by the fact I sometimes decide to not pick up the phone. Maybe even flabbergasted isn’t the right word, he was shocked.
He was even more surprised when he learned I did the same with email. I myself was surprised by his way of thinking. As soon as his phone vibrates, or a notification alert sounds for a new email he is distracted from the thing he is doing and is going into his inbox or to his phone. Constantly he is enslaved by the alerts surrounding him and he is responding to them directly. New message on twitter, Yammer or Facebook? He is going to these media instantly to read it and to reply to it. A core example of FOMO: fear of missing out.
Just some advice
Of course you are not like that guy, you know better. You probably know people like him. Well just show them this post and tell them the following:
Trust me, you won’t miss a thing if you don’t pick up your phone for a day or won’t do your emails for a day or even two days or a week. If things are urgent and you aren’t supposed to miss it, people will be able to find you and to reach you with the important message. If they don’t: probably the message isn’t important enough and wouldn’t add enough value.
A safety net
And what if you would like to have some kind of safety net for the information you might miss? Build your network. Get connected to people with whom you are sharing something, interest, a passion, work, etc etc. If you build a network and you are investing in it by contributing to it, if you add value to them, they will be the ones who will make sure that important things come to you.
Now turn off your phone and turn of your mail application and start working on meaningful things and finish those things you were distracted from.