Over 500,000 people visited Farnam Street last month to expand their knowledge and improve their thinking. Work smarter, not harder with our free weekly newsletter that's full of time-tested knowledge you can add to your mental toolbox.

What Is The Most Effective Distraction-Management Technique?

In Your Brain at Work: Strategies for Overcoming Distraction, Regaining Focus, and Working Smarter All Day Long, David Rock writes:

One of the most effective distraction-management techniques is simple: switch off all communication devices during any thinking work. Your brain prefers to focus on things right in front of you. It takes less effort. If you are trying to focus on a subtle mental thread, allowing yourself to be distracted is like stopping pain to enjoy a mild pleasure: it’s too hard to resist! Blocking out external distractions altogether, especially if you get a lot of them, seems to be one of the best strategies for improving mental performance.

What to read next?
Stop Trying To Do So Much Work
7 Things Highly Productive People Do
Do you get better at multitasking with experience?
Why do we lose focus so easily?
Do you make too many decisions?
The power of lonely: What we do better without other people around