Concentrate, Dammit!

I’ve always said that I have a problem concentrating.

I used to blame it on things. I said that University was too boring (I still think so) so I couldn’t concentrate. I made excuses like “I just can’t concentrate” and more or less have accepted it as the way I am.

But I’ve realized something.

Excuses don’t help

So I’ve started to take some steps to help me concentrate on the things I need to do. Things like my family, job and blogs.

In my usual mode, I just glide by and letting things go, well, the way they go.

As I spend much of my day in front of a computer, I have become very distracted of late, letting time slip into things like Twitter, checking email and catching up on reading the things in my Google reader.

Here are two things I did today to get things rolling.

Turn off everything

When my computer loads up, there at least five programs there, waiting to all distract me.

Today I turned them all off.

Turned off Twitter.

Turned off IM (did this a while ago actually).

Closed all Firefox tabs, except my homepage. Most importantly I closed email and Facebook.

Firefox tips

I was aiming at doing some job research and some blog writing this morning.

To keep myself from being distracted during this process. I discovered some Firefox shortcuts that make using it more effective.

F11 (go ahead, press it now)

This puts Firefox into full-screen mode.

No tabs visible to provide immediate distraction, even new tabs don’t show unless you move your mouse to the top.

Alt+Tab still scrolls through the tabs.

Ctrl+N still opens a new tab.

Ctrl+L still focuses on the address bar, but instead opens a small window which works the same

Unlike in the usual mode you’ll need to do Ctrl+N then Ctrl+L to type in the new tab address, in the usual mode you’ll only need Ctrl+N and the focus immediately falls on the address bar.

Avoiding Asides

Another thing I’ve done today is to have a pen and paper handy for writing down every thought that’s not on the current task.

And that last one is the reason I managed to pump out this article at the end of lunchtime.

UPDATE: I wrote this on Thursday, but due to maintenance by my webhost, my sites were down for a day or two, so I only posted it now.

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