Overwhelmed? Scattered? Distracted? 3 Easy Ways to Put an End to It!

If you ever feel overwhelmed, scattered, distracted or like your to-do list will swallow you alive.

I have three simple techniques to help you put an end to it so you can focus and get stuff done!  

I would be lying if I didn’t share with you that as I write this piece, today is one of those days for me. I am fairly overwhelmed and slightly scattered. Thankfully I’ve made the firm decision to focus and avoid letting myself get distracted. (at least for a few hours)  

“You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.”  – Mark Twain

How ever do we stay focused and tackle the 5,713 things on our to-do list? Yes! As entrepreneurs, freelancers, side hustlers, and all of us working towards achieving big things, our “to-do-lists” are usually so gigantic they may seem impossible to tackle.

The greatest problem here is that the list in and of itself can be a distraction! This diversion that is supposed to keep you organized can also quickly lead to overwhelm and leave you feeling scattered in an attempt to get “it” all done.

In the interest of helping us avoid distractions, maintaining focus and increasing productivity; I’m going to keep this short and sweet.  There are a lot of “tricks of the trade” to help with focus and productivity. Here are my three favorite and so far the ones I have found to be most effective to avoid the overwhelm and get stuff done.


Write down the three most important tasks you must complete each day. Preferably the night before or first thing in the morning. When you know the main actions, you must focus on it’s easier to get right to it without allowing distractions to creep in.

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” – Leonardo da Vinci

Out of these three things pick either the hardest one or the easiest one to do first. By picking the hardest one first, you get it done and out of the way. And by choosing the easiest, you build momentum for the day.




Use a “timed sessions” technique like the Pomodoro technique. This popular time management technique is also a productivity hack as over time this habit helps to increase focus. You break down your work day into “timed work intervals” with timed breaks in between. This technique also forces you to focus on one task at a time which in and of itself will help you get more done in less time. This technique is not only an excellent way to help stave off distractions, but also avoid burnout.

“Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple.” –  Steve Jobs  

One of my favorite tools that incorporate both #1 and #2 is The Mastery Journal by John Lee Dumas. This journal has been a game changer in my focus and productivity since I started using it.


Say no to email and social media browsing and set specific times for those tasks. Turn off those notifications! How many times have you gone in to check one email or one response, just to find yourself in your inbox for twenty or thirty minutes? What? Never!… Yeah right

Ok, once again I admit this is one of my biggest culprits of “focus sabotage.” Just say no!  

By setting specific times to do your “correspondence,” you eliminate this little diversion from keeping you from your goal.  

“Focus is a matter of deciding what things you’re not going to do.” – John Carmack

One of my favorite tools to achieve #3 is the Self Control app it allows you to block specific sites for a set timed period. The other trick I use as mentioned in the previous post is to make sure my phone is either away from me, on airplane mode or turned off.

And there you have it! 3 simple tricks to get more done. 

There are a ton more ways to stay disciplined, keep your focused and complete your most important tasks. These are three I have found work for me on most days. I’m by far not a master at this, but as someone with significant ADHD and a former owner of Godzilla size “to-do” lists, I can vouch for these three techniques.

I believe just one of these is a game changer. If you are someone that struggles with being in overwhelm and “too-much-to-do,” I highly recommend starting with #1. Replace your daily “to-do” list with this technique and stick to it for at least two weeks. I promise you; it will make a huge difference in your productivity, your level of stress and very likely your bottom line.

Do you use specific techniques to maintain your focus and increase productivity? Let’s be productive together! What are your favorite tools, tips, and tricks to stay on track? I’d love to know, help a sista’ out and share them here!


Your Most Powerful Tool or Your Biggest Distraction?

Hint 😉 –  Most of us have it!

Today, our phones are one of the most powerful tools in our arsenal! We can do just about everything on our phones for both our business and personal needs. Of course from the obvious tasks like sales calls, follow ups and emails to paying bills. And now we can even accomplish a lot of our online marketing needs on these all too fabulous devices. As one of my besties would say about all these advances: “It’s Fantasmical” (fantastic and magical all at once). 

It is not, however, all hunky dory all the time! As much as this “fantasmical” tool is helpful, it can also be detrimental and contribute to our lack of focus. Of course, it’s not the phone itself, but everything we can access on it! How many times have you told yourself “just a quick check-in to…” only to find yourself still on that app 10-15 minutes later? I’m willing to bet you if you are honest is not that rare. I can tell you, for me, it’s much too often. And there’s more; it is easy for one app to lead to another and so forth. The cycle can be vicious!

Obviously, all this is not privy just to your mobile device; we have all the apps, social media, email notifications, pop-up ads, etc. coming to us via laptops and desktops. I’m focusing on phones because we have them on us all the time. Whereas even though our laptops are also “mobile,” we don’t typically have them on us and open all the time. And our phones/mobile devices can also post a distraction while we are working on our laptops and desktops. We can also go into how these marvelous devices take away from our ability to connect with each other in social situations, but we’ll digress from our focus here which is productivity.

This constant demand for our attention all leads to massive distraction and even worse, multi-tasking! Research now has shown that our brains can only focus on one particular thing at a time successfully. While we all may be able to switch from one task to another quickly, we are not truly multi-tasking, we are only diverting our attention from one part of the brain to another. This switching not only reduces our performance, but it also robs us of precious time and resources. Several studies even show a reduction on Iq and brain density stemming from multi-tasking!



But let’s get down to business here.

Of course, there are a lot of benefits to staying focus. And the more we learn, we now realize that there are significant gains from focusing on one task at a time. Some of these benefits are increased productivity, completing challenging projects in less time, gain more time, have less stress, enjoy your daily tasks more and an overall happier existence.

So… What can we do to reduce distractions and multi-tasking? The first thing you can do is make the decision to do so.

“Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

The next thing is to stay committed to your decision! Ahh… So hard, right!?

“There’s always a way – if you’re committed.”

– Tony Robbins

Ok, you made the decision to make “focus” a priority, and you are committed to your success! Sweet! Since we are focusing on your mobile device as a distraction, we’ll start with just the phone. By keeping things simple and making only a few changes at once, you’ll be more likely to stick to it. Let’s look at three simple things you can do to stick to your commitment.

  • Easy! Put your phone on Airplane Mode, Do Not Disturb or you can always turn it off altogether when you are working on other tasks that do not require you to use your phone. 


  • This one is hard! Do not go for your phone first thing when you wake up. What you do first thing in the morning, helps set the tone for the rest of your day. When you go for that phone first thing and proceed to check email and/or your social media, you will disrupt your focus for the next several hours and possibly the remainder of the day. In addition to that, it will awaken other yucky things like stress hormones as you immediately go into “response” mode. And it will limit your ability to experience flow and to tackle your most important tasks first as opposed to everyone else’s.


  • Use it wisely, and it can actually save you time! Yes, it’s not all bad! Put that smart device to good use and make it work for you. One of the most excellent time-saving things you can use it for is meetings and collaboration. Save commuting time and schedule FaceTime, Google Hangouts or Skype calls from anywhere. The other is to use that calendar to work for you as opposed to against you and help you block out the times you need to be more productive at everything you set out to do.

Easy enough right? If we can accomplish our three most important tasks without interruptions each day, how much extra time and energy can we have? I’ll be writing a second part to this post with even more productivity hacks to help us achieve higher performance in less time.

There is no greatness where there is no simplicity, goodness, and truth.

 -Leo Tolstoy 

Your turn! Are you implementing any of the tips above? Are they working for you? Do you have others you’d like to share? Let’s connect and let me know here!