Leo Babauta – focus : a simplicity manifesto in the age of distraction. From the free PDF version of the book:
"In the days when computers took up only part of our lives, there were times when we could get away from them, when we were disconnected from the grid. Unfortunately, many people still filled much of that time with watching television, which isn't much better.
[…] When it's not a pre-appointed time to check email, have it closed. This principle, by the way, also applied to any other forms of communication, such as Twitter, Facebook, IM, forums, etc.
[…] I'd recommend using headphones — it doesn't matter what kind — to further block out distractions. It also means coworkers are less likely to interrupt you if they see the headphones on.
[…] Take responsibility for your life. If your job forces you to rush, take control of it. Make changes in what you do, in how you work. Work with your boss to make changes if necessary. And if really necessary, you can eventually change jobs.
[…] Meetings are usually a big waste of time. And they eat into your day, forcing you to squeeze the things you really need to do into small windows, and making you rush.
[…] Practice being comfortable with sitting, doing nothing. […] Try standing in line and just watching and listening to people around you. It takes practice, but after awhile, you'll do it with a smile.
[…] You do your work, one task at a time, each task done with full focus and dedication. You spend time with loved ones, as if nothing else existed. This is summed up very well by something Charles Dickens once wrote, "He did each single thing as if he did nothing else."
[…] When you walk, you can think, which is something that's hard to do when you're sitting and distracted all day. When you get to your destination, write down all the notes from your walking contemplation. When you walk, you can also clear your head, meditate, or just enjoy your surroundings and relieve stress.
[…] The employee comes in, sits down, and figures out what matters most for today. What are the 3-5 tasks that most need to get done, that will make the most difference for the company or organization? No checking email or voicemail at this point — just quiet, and focus. He then sits down and, with a completely clear desk, blocks out all distractions — no phones or other mobile devices, no email, no notifications, nothing to disrupt. He works on the first task on the list."