Don’t Get Distracted – Book Review of Indistractable

Indistractable book review

Is This What You Planned?

What did you do yesterday? Was it what you meant to do?

According to Nir Eyal in his new book Indistractable, success is accomplishing what you intend, even if it is watching a video or taking a nap.

But how can we stay on track to do what we plan?

That’s the hard part. That’s what Eyal writes about in Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life.

We tend to blame technology and our phones for distracting us from what we really want to do. We get sucked into time warps with social media and internet surfing and looking at Pinterest.

But people have always found ways to be distracted. If not technology, it’s something else. The problem isn’t the medium of distraction (although some things are more tempting than others); the problem is ourselves.

“Traction helps us accomplish goals; distraction leads us away from them.”

The Indistractable Model

Eyal presents us with The Indistractable Model, four steps to become indistractable:


Identify and manage the psychological discomfort that leads you off track. The drive to relieve discomfort is the root cause of our behavior; everything else is a proximate cause. Time management is pain management.

2. Make time for TRACTION

Turn your values into time. You actually perform better under constraints because limitations give you a structure. Book 15 minutes on your schedule every week to reflect and refine your calendar. You can’t call something a distraction unless you know what it is distracting you from.


Remove external triggers to keep distractions out. Is this trigger serving you, or are you serving it? Many things become irrelevant when you give them a little time to breathe. Even desktop clutter takes a heavy psychological toll on your attention.

4. Prevent DISTRACTION with pacts

Being indistractable not only requires keeping distraction out. It also necessitates keeping yourself in. Rein yourself in with the ancient practice of precommitment, but only after applying the first three steps. Make unwanted behaviors more difficult to do.

Are You Phubbing?

Eyal presents both psychological theories as well as practical tips for how to become indistractable in a variety of situations, such as in the workplace, among friends, in intimate relationships, with children, even in meetings and group chats.

Some of the advice you may have heard before, but other parts are new or at least rebranded (you may be a phubber* even if you don’t call it that).

Thanks to Eyal, I’m having to rethink how I handle (or give in to) my own distractions and where I’m placing my attention.

Because how we control our attention is how we choose our life.

It’s worth our full focus.

* * *

What distracts YOU the most? How do you refocus? Please share in the comments.

* Phubbing = a combination of “phone” and “snubbing;” paying more attention to your phone than to people

Read more about Indistractable here.

Learn more in this video.

Indistractable Video

My thanks to Net Galley
for the review copy of this book


9 thoughts on “Don’t Get Distracted – Book Review of Indistractable

  1. Martha J Orlando

    Believe it or not, Lisa, I’m not easily distracted. When I decide to do something, I just go for it most of the time. I guess I do practice prioritizing, and try to give my full attention to the moment at hand.
    Great review!

  2. Theresa Boedeker

    Writing down this book title. And yes, it is not always technology that distracts us, we have been distracted since the beginning of time. It reminds me of how people who retire say they don’t know how they got all that stuff done before, because they now have very little free time even they are now retired. We can fill our time with so many things that keep us free getting stuff done.

    A dirty kitchen always distracts me. I need a clean kitchen to cook.

  3. Pam Ecrement

    Hi Lisa!

    Looks like a fascinating book. I watched the video and then found a 45 minute program on You Tube and I think he has sound ideas. I say that from many perspectives including my teaching background.

  4. Barbara Harper

    I don’t know that I’d agree that success is accomplishing what we intend–often God has plans for my time that I didn’t know about, even when I’ve asked Him to guide my planning. But, aside from divine distractions and opportunities, we can get distracted all too easily. It’s funny how I’ll long for time to write, and when it comes, I suddenly find all kinds of “important” things to do. 🙂 But once I get started, then I am into it and hate to stop again.

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      I got my copy of Indistractable from Net Galley too. It’s definitely a good book! My only complaint is that it was on the Adobe Digital format instead of Kindle. That’s my least favorite way to read a book. 🙁 But since it was free, I can’t complain. lol.

  5. floyd

    I went from the kid with ADD to the guy that has laser focus,

    It might be beyond discipline and even a bit selfish, but saying no to people and cutting them short when I’m short of time is just what you have to do to accomplish the things on your life list.

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