Is It Time to Take a Distraction Diet?

Education & Training with The Lones Group, Inc.

The Lones Group, Inc.

Is It Time to Take a Distraction Diet?

Are you feeling lethargic? Pulled in too many directions? Are you unable to complete the tasks you used to handle easily? Feeling weighed down and uninspired? Lacking energy and focus? If so, it may be time for what I call the distraction diet!

I work with real estate agents with varied backgrounds, and varied businesses, in various parts of the country. But here's what I can tell you most of them have in common: a problem managing distractions.

If you compare your business to the human body, you know that the right diet is critical to health and success. Prior to doing an activity - let's say, playing in a soccer match - do you eat three candy bars and hoist a shot of tequila? Not if you want have a great game, you don't!

Yet many real estate agents feed the same sort of temporarily satisfying but absolutely non-nourishing "work calories" to their hungry business. All those distractions are like junk food to your business, and will slow your work flow to a crawl.

Distractions draw us in because they either add pleasure to our lives or remove pain from our lives. It's that simple. Distractions allow us to take the easy route - the pleasure route. At least for the moment, we avoid the pain. But you and I both know that a distraction is just a temporary turnoff on the road to a successful business!

Try tracking your distractions for a week and see if there are any patterns. Understanding what's getting you off track is the best way to start keeping on track. Also look at what you're being distracted from. What is it that is so unappealing or painful to you that you want to divert your attention elsewhere? Then spend some time trying to figure out why the activity is so repellent to you. It may well be that it's something you could have someone else handle for you in your business.

I've spoken before about my "hour of power" - that hour that I dedicate at the beginning of each day with no phones, no email, no interruptions from family or friends. That hour of power ensures that I have a big block of time to get work done each day, and helps make up for potential distractions later on.

It is the #1 thing that I've built in to my business which has created success for me. If you're not doing an hour of power, try it!  You'll be amazed by how much you can get done. But of course, you need to be focused for more than an hour a day.

Here are some suggestions for providing an overall structure to make that easier:

  1. Set core priorities.  What must get done in your business each week? Lead generation? Follow-up?   Market research? Previewing properties?   Make your list, and figure out frequencies for these activities.
  2. Determine what keeps you from doing these important tasks - list your "distractions" and track them.
  3. Start building a series of small good habits and patterns.  Rome wasn't built in a day, and habits are hard to change. But pretty quickly, small habits become easy-to-manage-routines for productivity.
  4. Have goals in your business.  Framing up your daily or weekly activities in this perspective helps you realize that not spending three hours per day on Facebook isn't going to mean the end of your social life and may actually help you achieve your business goals.
  5. Create bite-sized bits of work.  A three-hour lead generation project too daunting? Break it into 30-minute bits instead.
  6. Track your results!  When you can look back to accomplishments that occurred as a result of the distraction diet it's a whole lot easier to stay motivated when the next one occurs.
  7. Build in rewards.  Maybe you can indulge in an activity that usually distracts you—except now you can enjoy it guilt free. Only you will know what's best, of course.
  8. Block out time. Not just for work - but for fun too!
  9. Ask friends and family for help.  Sharing your goals with those close to you accomplishes two things: 1) it allows them to support you by reminding you to keep on task, and 2) if they are the distraction it can help them understand why you may sometimes need to say "no" to them!
  10. Remove distractions as best you can!

Like all diets, the distraction diet requires effort - but boy, will it ever yield rewards! Make today the day you start making good "work calorie" choices for long-term, sustainable results.


By Denise Lones CSP, M.I.R.M., CDEI - The founding partner of The Lones Group, Denise Lones, brings nearly three decades of experience in the real estate industry. With agent/broker coaching, expertise in branding, lead generation, strategic marketing, business analysis, new home project planning, product development, Denise is nationally recognized as the source for all things real estate. With a passion for improvement, Denise has helped thousands of real estate agents, brokers, and managers build their business to unprecedented levels of success, while helping them maintain balance and quality of life.

The Lones Group, Inc.

Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Joyce Marsh 06/09/2018 03:00 AM
Real Estate Best Practices
managing time
business management
real estate
denise lones
hour of power
the lones group
task management
zebra report
managing distractions
healthy business
avoiding distractions
distraction diet

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Fred Griffin Tallahassee Real Estate
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

       Distractions!  Losing control over the telephone, the wandering mind, the put-it-off-until-later attitude... they are like those 3 candy bars with a shot of tequila.  They are a destructive force.

May 25, 2018 05:14 PM #1
Fred Griffin Tallahassee Real Estate
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

  Shout out to Carol Williams you may enjoy reading this post, Carol!

May 25, 2018 05:14 PM #2
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good evening Denise Lones,

I love your statement "Make today the day you start making good "work calorie" choices for long-term, sustainable results." Awesome advice!!

May 25, 2018 06:48 PM #3
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Hi Denise- I admire people who know how to turn off the distractions and focus on what they need to get done. You've offered some excellent tips. 

May 26, 2018 03:06 PM #4
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

            Thank you Denise!

May 26, 2018 04:54 PM #5
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
New Hampshire Home Stager

I admit I am easily distracted. I usually get done what needs to get done, but the price I pay is being overly tired. Great tips, thank you!

May 27, 2018 06:02 AM #6
Maria Sapio
Keller Williams of Central PA - Carlisle, PA
Real Estate Agent- Carlisle, PA.

Great post and yes, it is so easy to allow those seemingly 'little' distractions into our day and weigh us down!  Thank you to Kathy Streib for highlighting this post in her weekly feature.

May 27, 2018 05:32 PM #7
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667,, Broker, Blackstone Realty Group - brokered by eXp Realty - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

It's so important to stay focused in our business (and lives). I was just thinking the other day that I had too many different things on my plate, which resulted in my not being able to get any of them done. I had to pick something to get done, and just work on that one thing. I'm making progress.

May 28, 2018 03:18 AM #8
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Oh there are so many distractions that can get in the way, often without us even realizing it or seeing how much time they eat up. And sometimes one leads to another. I have a JUST SAY NO note on my computer to remind me to say NO to thos things that distract me.

May 28, 2018 05:20 PM #9
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

Hi Denise, I do apprecaite those timelines we give ourselves to complete tasks. I don't multitask as I'm a big  believer in living ( and working ) in the moment - mindful of what I'm doing. However, life does intrude and happen - it's imperative to be disciplined enough to quickly get back in the zone. D 

Jun 02, 2018 07:49 AM #10
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team

Good morning, Denise Lones I just saw this on a reblog from Joyce.... just as eating healthy requires discipline, so too does focusing solely on your daily work.... focus and discipline are key to health and working productively...good post.

Jun 09, 2018 04:46 AM #11
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CSP, MIRM, CDEI - Real Estate Coaching & Branding
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