I recently listened to the audiobook Hyperfocus by Chris Bailey it was an interesting read. One I’d recommend if you’re interested in minimising distractions and focusing entirely on single tasks.
The book talks a lot about minimising distractions. Muting mobile phone notifications, only checking email periodically and all the other stuff you’d expect in a book about productivity.
What I liked though was the discussion around intention for attention. By sitting down and defining what we intend then we can single task on that and ensure it’s delivered. Giving 100% of our attention to whatever we’re intending to focus on. If that’s watching a television programme with a loved one then do that, if it’s reading a book then do that. It’s only be defining the intention of our attention that we’ll ensure we’re effective in what we’re doing. Obviously this isn’t as easy as it sounds and Chris Bailey gives lots of suggestions of how to achieve this.
The other thing he focuses on is scattered attention. Hyperfocus is ideal for when we are mono-tasking on a particular task, but he discusses the benefits of letting out mind wander to capture random thoughts (he calls these unclosed loops, a phrase coined from Getting Things Done I believe) and to find to solutions to problems. Bailey argues that it’s only by creating space for our mind to wander and capturning those wanderings we can unlock the power of scatter focus.
Overall the book was a really interesting lesson, probably not up there in my top 3 productivity books of all time but a few interesting ideas and worth a read if you’re into that kind of thing.
Have you read Hyperfocus? What did you think of it?