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A way to reach peak flow

Today’s tip: Keep a “later list” to prevent nagging thoughts from interrupting you in the moment.

So you’ve finally reached that elusive, distraction-free state. It’s just you, the project in front of you, and your uninhibited mind—until you suddenly remember those forms you still have to fill out before your dentist appointment, and that you need to run to the store to buy more cat food, and that your dryer is making weird noise and you should really get that checked out.

Don’t let these thoughts knock you out of the zone. Laura Vanderkam recommends keeping a “later list,” a place to jot down any semi-useful thoughts that pop into your head. You can come back to them later, when you’re doing something that doesn’t require your full attention — and in the meantime, you can focus, secure in the knowledge that they won’t slip your mind.

📚 More from Forge on getting things done:

A Better To-Do List, According to a Scrum Master

Your Productivity Hinges on How You Arrange Your Desk

A 3-Step Plan to Manage Your Energy All Day

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