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    Thank you for sharing, Robert. I agree that one has to learn how to manage their time when working remotely. How do you deal with distractions while working remotely?

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      Hi Sarah, good question. Noisy neighbors aside, my home is pretty quiet โ€” Iโ€™m alone here during the day, and the catโ€™s always sleeping โ€” so my main source of distraction is my own brain.ย 

      Unfortunately, my brain is pretty good at distracting me. Iโ€™ll be writing something and suddenly wonder, โ€œMan, are there any islands without snails? I bet there are. I should look that up.โ€ Iโ€™d say that happens to me every 20 to 30 minutes, so Iโ€™ve learned to break up my tasks into manageable 20-30 minute chunks, at the end of which Iโ€™ll allow myself a short break to google whatever stupid thing my brain has decided it desperately needs to know.ย 

      Obviously thatโ€™s very similar to the Pomodoro Technique, but I never use an actual timer the way youโ€™re supposed to with Pomodoro. Whenever I try using a timer, I end up focusing on how much time I have left instead of on my work, which leads to me not feeling like Iโ€™ve earned my break when it finally goes off.

      I also find Iโ€™m better at concentrating when I have something to do with my hands, which is part of why I used to constantly drink coffee and now Iโ€™m constantly drinking tea. I make my tea gongfu style instead of just sticking a teabag in a mug, which keeps my hands busy filling and refilling my teacup (gongfu-style cups are really small). For some people that would be a major distraction, but personally, having a little ritual to do while Iโ€™m working really helps me focus.