Things that stop you from being productive

Things that distract you from being productive Let’s talk about how to provide being productive. It’s a thing I know all too well, being distracted while you need or want to get stuff done. Here are a few things that easily disturb most people and how to stop yourself from being distracted.

Social Media / Online

I guess, for most people me included, Social Media is the biggest disturbance. We constantly check Instagram, answer a friend on Snapchat, browse on Pinterest ‘to get inspired’ or feel the urge to tweet that we can’t concentrate *guilty at all points*.
And if it’s not Social Media, I can’t cut myself loose from watching Netflix non-stop (like literally NON-STOP. One episode after another). Netflix is so addicting and the death of productivity. Because let’s be real, who just watch’s only one episode? Nobody!

Besides Social Media and Netflix, online shopping is the biggest thing online that stops me from being productive. Followed by checking flights to cool places I can’t go right now (’cause I have stuff to do).

No planningThings that distract you from being productive

I find it really hard to get stuff done when I don’t really plan and prepare for it.
Without a list, I’m totally lost and can’t concentrate because I always try to not forget something.
My silly brain can’t handle all my stuff. Haha.
I wrote a post about lists and how I plan and stay organized. I suggest you check it out.


No timelines

This point goes hand in hand with the last one. I always set myself timelines for things I need to do
(most times the deadline is one to two days before the actual day a project need’s to be finished.
So I always have a little extra time if something unexpected happens. Without a timeline,
I just do the stuff at the last possible moment and just laze around till then or even miss it.


Read my blog post about lists and how I stay organized here



A cluttered workspace

I hate to sit and work on a messy desk! I don’t have enough space and most of the stuff flying around on my desk really distracts me.
Some people may swear by a messy desk and say it sparks creativity. Point to Einstein. But for me, there is no way I can focus when day job papers, bills, tax forms and a collection of household articles are piling up on my desk.

I currently have a quiet narrow desk so I keep it as clutter free as possible. For that, I have a tray on top,  to store little bits and bobs, love notes and pretty things such a perfume, flowers and my pens. Besides that, I only have my laptop, a drink, my diary and notepad on my desk.


  How to stimulate productivity
  • Switch off your Phone (mine is silent when I need to get stuff done. Plus, it isn’t connected to my Laptop)
  • Get stuff done before you start (check all your social media, do emails, make the dishes or whatever needs to be done and will probably distract you)
  • Tidy up your workspace, create a surrounding you enjoy working in and which sets the mood to create
  • Have a drink with you (I always have a large glass of lemon water or tea at my desk, so my brain is hydrated all the time)
  • Listen to something that relaxes or motivates you (If you want to know more about my work playlist or what I listen to while ‘workin’ let me know in the comments below and I’ll be happy to share it with you in a blog post)
  • Write down all your thoughts and things you also need to do, so your brain can concentrate better


Focus on what you want to achieve

The thing that helps me most to be productive is focusing. And even when I’m not able to fixate on my work while I’m sitting at my desk or workspace I take a step back and focus on the overall project. Sometimes there are other parts that need to be done for your project such as taking pictures, interact with people…

And when you really can’t accumulate, take a walk outside, call a friend or prepare something nice to eat. And come back a few hours later with fresh thoughts and energy.


What is your biggest distraction and how do you manage to be productive?



Make sure you read my guide to lists blog post if you haven’t already.  It provides some great tips on how to plan and stay on top of everything.  Read it here


It’s almost February. That means it’s almost time for a new IEB newsletter episode. I have a few super cool things planned for the next month which you will know first when you’re on my subscription list. So go and enter here or fill out the form down below.


Images for today’s post are taken by my friend Diana.


Much love, Ilka x




  1. 26. January 2017 / 20:30

    I tidied up my desk & jotted down productivity boost tips based on the list in this post! Keep the good work up! Thank you for this piece of inspiration to alert me to fix up simple things like drinking water & tidying up the desk.

    • Ilka
      26. January 2017 / 21:36

      Aw, I’m so happy the tips held you, Viviane.
      Glad you like the post. Much love, Ilka x

  2. 25. January 2017 / 10:55

    Omg, social media is so so bad for productivity. My worst enemies are facebook (unfortunately most people don’t post pictures anymore…) and snapchat. You are entertained by all the articles from vice, MTV, brothers… at snapchat, but afterwards it feels like you have lost time. And in fact you have not only lost it, you have wasted it. So for me I decided to only watch my friends’ stories on instagram, don’t check facebook that often and enjoy instagram which inspires me. Instead I read books. You never feel like you wasted precious lifetime when you read books.

    • Ilka
      25. January 2017 / 11:04

      Haha, that’s true, Diana. x
      I check my Instagram and. other Social Media so often daily and really enjoy it, but when I’m on my desk (or with friends) I try not to.
      Love ya babe. xx

  3. 25. January 2017 / 02:44

    A cluttered workspace drives me crazy! I need everything organized and neat or I feel like I get antsy. Instead of working, I’ll focus on the mess.

    • Ilka
      25. January 2017 / 11:02

      So so true, Krystal. The mess is taking over so quickly. Haha.
      Much love, Ilka x

  4. 24. January 2017 / 15:54

    I find starting with the easy stuff can help too. It means i feel more positive and motivated, and feel i can work up to harder tasks. Or just quicker jobs first. I also think hydration is a fab tip. I’m also lost without a to-do list. I accidentally threw my to-do list away and felt like i had no idea what i was doing! x

    • Ilka
      25. January 2017 / 11:01

      That’s true, Jodie. Thanks for sharing.
      To-Do lists are my life. I can’t imagine what I would do if I would lose mine. Haha.

      Much love, Ilka x

  5. 23. January 2017 / 23:33

    I am working so hard on keeping my phone away from me when I am meant to be doing other things. I also agree that if I don’t have a list, I find it really hard to start. Great post!

    • Ilka
      24. January 2017 / 10:31

      Thank you, Kate. Social Media is my enemy when it comes to productivity. Haha.
      Much love, Ilka x

  6. 23. January 2017 / 19:40

    I felt some guilt after reading this post. Social media and my cell phone are my biggest distractions!! It happens including when I’m at work and that’s terrible!! What I usually do is put my phone on vibrate and inside a draw where I won’t see it and focus on the tasks at hand otherwise I’m going to be checking it every minute. My work space is usually clutter free because I like clear clean spaces. Thanks for the useful tips – hope I can put them to work

    • Ilka
      23. January 2017 / 20:11

      I’m glad you like the post, Shevy.
      Yes, my phone used to distract me all the time. But when it is silent, I most times forget about it. Haha.

      Much love and thank you for the lovely comment. Ilka x

    • Ilka
      23. January 2017 / 06:42

      Thank you, Nisha. Yes, me too. My biggest distraction would be Social Media (especially Pinterest), it’s so addicting.
      I’m glad you liked the post. Much love, Ilka x

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *