We live in an instantaneous digital world where we feel we need to respond to someone halfway across the globe who sent us a message rather than being with the person who is physically with us. Or we feel like we need to respond instead of focusing on a critical piece of research, writing, or other work we are doing.
We fear missing out. We fear upsetting the other. But more deeply, we fear irrelevance. We somehow have equate our own value with the number of digital interactions we have. This leads to the frantic, to the tyranny of the urgent without any classification of what is important or not important (thanks Stephen Covey).
We tell ourselves we will do the important work when we have time or when these immediate tasks are done; but they are never done. The challenge of our day and of every single change project is deciding to do the important work first. Schedule the big rocks first and guard that time with every fibre of our being. It builds the culture around you – people like us, do things like this.
And the little thing? Find the ‘settings’ button on your phone(s) and all your devices, and turn notifications OFF. You’ll be glad you did.