And it was one of the best decisions I made in 2015.
The decision was to achieve 100 Disconnected Days last year: To disconnect myself from all communications (email, phone calls, texts and social media) for a 24 hour period of time (sometimes 2-days straight or 48 hours!) so that I could focus on head down, undisturbed, creative production… or rest and recovery.
Why did I set out to achieve this goal?
Because of this one problem: I am easily seduced.
It seems I am weak.
Every day I set out to be disciplined.
Every day I promise I will not stray.
Everyday I swear I will stay focused.
But every day somehow the siren’s song of email, texts, phone calls and social alerts always prostrate me.
I give in.
I bite the apple.
And once again the grand intentions of my day are squandered in the vortex of reacting to the solicitations of other people’s agendas.
But when I created a Disconnected Day for myself, a day to disconnect from The Matrix of distractions, I was FREE!
I no longer gave into the temptations of the sirens whose sole purpose is to lure me from my goals or priorities.
In fact, I no longer heard their songs at all.
You see in reality, we are all weak.
We are all easily seduced by the vibrating phone or new message notification and the anxiety that someone is needing us and expecting our response.
It’s too great a seduction to resist.
The urge to submit is too overwhelming.
Trying to fight the compulsion all day will only deplete you and ultimately defeat you.
It is easier to avoid temptation than it is to resist it.
(That is a big life lesson right there, don’t read on too fast. Read that again.)
Declaring it a Disconnected Day allows you to completely avoid the siren calls of The Matrix.
Then in the undistracted stillness, I am able access a creative depth, focus and flow I would not otherwise.
Now the key is set up an autoresponder on your email with the alert of your Disconnected Day (see mine below).
Knowing that this alert is going out to all those trying to solicit you gives you mental, emotional and psychological ease because you know that they are being notified that you are not reachable today, when you will be again, and if it’s life or death how you could be reached in an emergency.
The best part is the self-accountability statement at the bottom: “If you hear from me on a day you receive this auto-responder then I have failed.”
It’s absolutely stupefying what you can get done in a day when you are able to be 100% focused and undisturbed for a full 24 hours. This alone is a HUGE benefit, and the bonus is it’s training everyone around me not to be dependent on me, thus taking more leadership themselves.
By staying on course with my goal to achieve 100 Disconnected Days last year, I experienced the most creative and productive year of my life. So much so that I LEVELED UP my goal for this year: 150 Disconnected Days*.
*Disconnected Day: A day focused on creative production or rest and recovery off the digital communication grid.
Action For Today:
How about you?
How many truly Disconnected Days did you have in 2015?
How often were the intentions and productive plans of your day sacrificed to the seductive siren’s song of email and the rest?
Use them to do focused project work and/or to recover and revitalize.
Even just one workday and one weekend day would get you to the goal.
But be warned.
If you do choose to join me, this will be harder than it sounds.
The siren’s songs are so lovely and so beautiful and you are emotionally and psychologically addicted to hearing them.
Even with wax in your ears and your hands and feet bound, you will be tempted to surrender.
You might not think so now, but when you are sailing through your day it will be hard not to stray.
I ask you to keep in mind the incredible production, value and impact you can create once you are no longer under the spell of the wicked mermaids of distraction.
You will need the help of those around you to bind you tighter if they see you trying to wiggle loose.
“You take the blue pill, the story ends.
You wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe.
You take the red pill, you stay in wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.”