How To Avoid The Dreaded OCD Loop

“Respect your efforts, respect yourself. Self-respect leads to self-discipline. When you have both firmly under your belt, that’s real power.” – Clint Eastwood

The beginning of every new year is the perfect time to examine your work habits and make the adjustments and changes in your routine that can make you more productive. After all the key to making more money is making the most out of the available time you have.

If you are new to internet marketing it’s vital to make every available minute count since you’re likely learning this business in the spare time you have away from your full-time job that pays your monthly bills. If you want to become a full-time professional internet marketer you’re going to have to learn as fast as possible.

Daily Discipline Improves Your Rate Of Success

The internet is a wonderful place. Almost too wonderful. It’s easy to lose yourself, and all sense of time, surfing from one page to the next. Like most people you probably start each day by checking your email messages or hopping on your smartphone to see what’s going on.

Afterwards, you’ll likely leave your email application open as you check your affiliate stats and sales. Next, you browse the news sites to see what’s new in the world before you get down to the real work for the day. Right?

After finding several interesting articles to read you’re distracted by headlines leading to other interesting articles on more sites. Then its on to Facebook and Twitter to find out what your friends are up to. Next, you probably check back to see if any new messages have come through. Maybe one email reminds you of an important task you forgot to do yesterday so you immediately get to finishing that.

Before you know it, it’s lunch time and you have almost nothing to show for it. Hours gone and lost forever. Sound familiar? Sure it does, we all do it.

The OCD Loop

The OCD Loop

Unless stopped forcefully, this behavior will become habitual and you’ll continue to waste time on auto-pilot without even realizing it. This ritual is something that internet marketing legend John Reese calls “the OCD loop“. It’s all a big time-suck.

Consider this fact:  Every single time you get distracted it costs you money.

Stop.  Read that again.

You need to wake up to this fact:  more internet surfing = less income

So how do we kill this beast called the OCD loop?

The key to avoiding the OCD loop is self awareness; and a plan. Before you finish work each day or night you should write out a simple plan and schedule to follow for the next day. List your daily tasks and rank them in order of importance.

Complete your three most important tasks the next morning before checking email, news, social media, and everything else. If the tasks are time-consuming then break them down even further into individual steps.

Set a goal of how long each task or step should take to complete and hold yourself to it. Set an alarm if you need to so you know you’re on schedule. Don’t allow anything to distract you from your plan. Once you complete the three most important tasks for each day then you can check your email and do all of the other internet business. But schedule a start and end time for that stuff too to make sure you don’t fall back into your old bad habits.

Know what you’re doing, be honest with yourself, recognize your limitations and weaknesses, and continue to dial in your daily discipline until you’re getting stuff done and following your plan every single day.

That’s how wealth is made in affiliate marketing.

Need more ideas? Here is an excellent video by Jeff Walker on how he kills the OCD Loop beast:


The Myth Of Multitasking

Time and time again the belief that multitasking works is discredited. Do you really think you’re good at doing several things at once? Trust me, you’re not!

Listening to music while you read a book? Driving while talking on the phone? Worse yet – texting while driving? You may think you’re doing both task well but you’re not.

Neuroscience research has proven that our brain doesn’t really do tasks simultaneously even though we think it does. What’s really happening is that that our brain just switches tasks quickly from one thing to another without us even consciously knowing. For example, when you’re driving and then reach for your phone to text message there is a concise stop/start process that goes on in your brain.

That microprocess of stopping and starting again as we switch (unconsciously) from one task to another actually kills our productivity. Rather than saving us time, it costs us time. It leads to more fatigue, makes us less efficient, and often opens us up to more mistakes.

These are complex, technological-driven times and we’re distracted by many more things than our ancestors ever dreamed of. But allow your brain to do what is was designed to do in the first place: performing one task flawlessly to its completion before instructing it to perform the next task.

Adapt A Single-Tasking Mindset

Replace your multi-tasking consciousness with a single-tasking one. A single-tasking consciousness not only improves your decision-making skills now but lasts late into your senior years. This conclusion was reached in a recent study called “Healthy Brain, Healthy Decisions” sponsored by the MetLife Mature Market Institute.  

3 Steps to Single-Tasking

Start your journey toward better brain health by adopting a single-tasking lifestyle in which getting things done sequentially is the rule. Your brain was wired for deep and innovative thinking, but that’s impossible to achieve if you’re trying to make it go in two or more directions at once. It takes a concerted effort to leave the chaotic addiction of multitasking behind, but the benefits are immediate and immense. It will increase your creativity, energy and focus. Here are a few tips to get you started:

  1. Give your brain some down time. You will be more productive if, several times a day, you step away from mentally challenging tasks for three to five minutes. Get some fresh air, for example, or just look out the window. Taking a break will help make room for your next inspired idea because a halt in constant thinking slows the mind’s rhythms to allow more innovative “aha” moments.
  2. Focus deeply, without distraction. Silence your phone, turn off your email and try to perform just one task at a time. Think it’s impossible to break away? Start with 15-minute intervals and work your way up to longer time periods. Giving your full attention to the project at hand will increase accuracy, innovation and speed.
  3. Make a to-do list. Then identify your top two priorities for the day and make sure they are accomplished above all else. Giving the most important tasks your brain’s prime time will make you feel more productive. Or, as Boone Pickens said, “When you are hunting elephants, don’t get distracted chasing rabbits.”*

Simplify your life. Do one thing at a time and do it well. Explode your productivity and income!

If it worked for me; it will work for you too.

Photo Credit: schnappischnap Flickr via Compfight cc

*excerpt from forbes.com

Photo Credit: BramstonePhotography via Compfight cc

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