What to Do When It’s Hard to Get Things Done

When we make plans for the future or even just today, why do we so seldom, if ever, plan on distractions? Why do we make our plans as if we are going to live in a perfect world and be left alone to focus on our work or family or whatever it is that we’re hoping to accomplish that day?

This state of being able to completely focus without distraction on whatever task we assign ourselves for the day has never happened in the past, yet we still plan as if this nirvana-like world will exist in the future. We plan as if we will be able to get down to work without accommodating the fact that life always intrudes to alter our priorities and test our focus.

The answer is simple yet we are so very often blind to it. What is it? Well, this conundrum is the high probability of low probability events. We don’t plan for low-probability events because, by definition, any one of them is unlikely to occur. Who plans on a flat tire, or accident, or stalled traffic because of an over-turned semi on their way to work?

However, the likelihood that one of the hundreds of low-probability events that could occur will occur sometime during our day is very high. We are all victimized, more frequently than we like, by traffic jams and flat tires and accidents.

Summing-up: How do you manage this high probability of some low probability event distracting you from what you want to do? Rather than trying to change the inevitable, it’s far more constructive to accept it and even plan on a distraction or two coming your way during the day. You will be glad you did!

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