How Perception Can Help You Control Distractions


What if we told you that it is the perception of yourself that determines your willpower? We're excited to report that indistractability is rooted soundly in that component of self-belief. 

In the second installment of the #ChosenInsightSeries on Taking Control of Our Focus, Chōsen Co-founder John Stanton re-reads Indistractable, Nir Eyal's book on focus, after struggling with Covid fatigue. Entering the experience with a beginner's mindset, he connected deeply with two techniques that can help us master the internal triggers that distract us.

"One of the big take-aways for me during this experience was the reminder that willpower is a habit. What Eyal so insightfully points out is that the perception we have of ourselves determines our willpower," says John. "If we see willpower as a habit instead of a finite resource, we will never run out of it.

Two key frameworks resonated with John, linked to neuroplasticity, and we're keen to share them with you:

Reimagine your Temperament via The Science of Play

Remember when you were a kid, and you played freely - at the drop of a hat? You could make any task into a game - even chores! John would like to invite you to reimagine your daily tasks by using fun and play to keep you focused.

Using the foundations of Flow State, we can decide to find variability in our recurring tasks to make them fun and playful. 

This is what we do at Chōsen: get leaders and innovators into the didactic state of Flow: when you are so engrossed in an activity that everything else fades away. The activity becomes so immersive that you can lose all track of time. 

Now, can you think of ways to reframe your tasks as playful? Reconnect with the examples from your childhood and apply the same techniques to your life today. 

Ego Depletion is Not Real

When you come home after a long day at work, how often do you kick off your shoes, complain to your partner, have a drink or two or three, and open the iPad for a binge session of Netflix to help you relax, instead of going through your evening wind-down routine? 

The reason you might find yourself so exhausted and burned out after a hard day can be influenced by what psychologists refer to as the ego-depletion effect.

In IndistractabIe, Eyal references research that shows that people who do not see willpower as a finite resource don't show signs of ego depletion. "It turns out that mindset is a key component of willpower. If we think we have poor self-control, then we will have poor self-control," says John.

Instead of beating ourselves up, John invites you to reimagine your temperament and be kind and compassionate with yourself when dealing with your shortcomings. Treat yourself as you would treat your best friend! Willpower is a skill that becomes a habit with practice - with that knowledge; you can take the steps necessary to become more focused. 

As a challenge for every person who has ever procrastinated in their life, we would like to invite you to reframe your perception of yourself to influence your willpower. 

For more information on how we can guide you to boost your wellbeing and increase resilience, join us on our 5-week online journey designed by our team of global performance experts composed of Gold Medal Olympians, Wellness Doctors, Nutritionists, Neuroscientists, and Business Leaders. You will learn the science behind resilience and set up new daily practices to bulletproof your wellbeing. CLICK HERE to enroll today.

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