Lesson 2-Interruptions


Previous Lessons


Interruptions: Eliminating and Managing Them

Welcome to Lesson 2 that looks at interruptions.  Interruptions are a huge thief of productivity.  Interruptions are going to occur.  Some we can limit or avoid.  Some we cannot.  In this lesson you will learn how to:  eliminate some common interruptions, resist reflexively reacting to them, and plan responses that minimize the disruption of interruptions.
You may choose to watch these videos by streaming live from the web, downloading the MP3s to your computer or MP3 player, or by reading the text transcript.
To get the most out of these lessons focus on taking action every day, no matter how small that action may be. Small actions add up more rapidly than you may realize. Much of the battle of time management, conquering clutter and getting organized is purely a matter of consistency.
You can save any of the files to your computer by simply right clicking on a link and selecting “save as” or “save target.” Mac users use a control click and select “save linked file to downloads” or “save linked file as…”
All PDFs in the lessons require Adobe PDF reader. The videos require the latest version of Quicktime. Both are free downloads.

Streaming Audio

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.


Resource Links for Downloading



  • Turn off alerts and/or your cell phone during blocks of time you have chosen for uninterrupted focus of your time and attention.  If you are in a job where it is critical for you to be available, screen calls and accept only what is necessary in your productivity blocks.
  • Set times for checking email, text messages, etc.  Example, check email at 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. only.  Process all of your email during those time blocks.
  • Set aside a ‘margin’ time to deal with the unexpected on your terms.