OK, so anyone who knows me, knows that I may be a little cynical from time to time. They also know that given the opportunity, I will try (most) things once. I have seen online Zoom focus sessions before and thought to myself ‘How can a Zoom Focus Session increase your productivity?’ I really couldn’t see how sitting there with your camera on in a Zoom room with others could help improve your productivity. I’m quite a self-conscious person. I thought I would feel paranoid that I was being watched. I also thought I would be too distracted by others moving about.
Due to the current situation, I feel there is a need to be more in control of my working time, and my New Year’s resolution of sorts is to value my me-time more.
For me, being more in control of my time means having more (or even some) me time, but my priority (and raison d’être), is to be more present and available for meetings for my Son. He has Dyspraxia, a plethora of Sensory difficulties, a lot of anxiety and sleep difficulties, which we have been trying to get help with for nearly two years. This year is too late in lots of ways as it is his GCSE year, but it WILL be the year that help gets put in place!
For that to happen, and for me to still help my clients and earn an income, I need to time block and be more productive in my working time. Easy right?
As many have unexpectedly found out this past year, working from home is hard. Working from home with children ‘under foot’ is harder. Working from home with children under foot and homeschooling is a challenge none of us could have foreseen. There aren’t enough adjectives in the world to describe how that is going for most of us. (We are all adults here – we don’t need to even mention those fronted adverbials!)
I have worked from home in various guises for over the last 11 years, so I am used to that. Working from home with a child under foot I have done many times too. When my Son was younger I would still send him to nursery/ the childminder on his normal days, to keep him in a routine, and to allow me to have focused work time. The rest though, has been a challenge of resolve like no other faced by myself and most parents around the world.
I only found out by chance about GoGoDone this week from a fellow VA. Being the inquisitive sort, I checked out the GoGoDone website. They offer two main types of sessions; a 90 minute Productivity Session; and a 120 minute Focus Session.
The Productivity session works along the Pomodoro principles (25 minutes focus, 5 minutes break). When you join the meeting, you introduce yourself. You then say what you are going to be working on and go into breakout rooms in smaller groups. Once the designated time-keeper gives the nod, everyone goes on mute and gets on with their work.
There’s no pressure or obligation to leave your cameras on, it’s down to personal choice. Someone assumes the role of timekeeper, and you start working for a block of 25 mins (N.B. the first block can be a little shorter depending upon how long the introductions take in the main room). When the time is up, the time-keeper will speak to the group, you all un-mute, and say how you are getting along with your objective, and have a natter. You repeat this a further two times. After the final 25 mins working, you go back into the main room for a quick update to the group on your progress.
The Focus session works in a similar way, but with two longer sessions and a longer break – again in line with the Pomodoro technique. So you join the meeting, have a brief chat with the main group. Then you go into breakout rooms, and work for a 50 minute slot, have a longer break of ten minutes, then another 50 minute focus session before rejoining the main group.
The sessions are very reasonably priced. They are $3 for the 90 minute session, and $4 for the 120 minute session. You can also pay for unlimited sessions too. These are $5 for a week, and a $20 monthly subscription.
The sessions are easy to book within the website, Once confirmed, you’ll receive an email with the meeting details on, and a link to the meeting which you can add to your calendar. There’s also a link to reschedule your session which is a really straight forward process.
I have found both sessions very enjoyable, and most importantly super-productive. My phone was switched off. I also didn’t have any Social Media open. I am using the sessions to complete some training which always seems to fall to the bottom of the bottomless To-Do List. I’ve also found that if my Son thinks I am in a meeting and the camera is on, he is less likely to disturb me 😆
I have been in some truly global sessions, with members from the USA, UK and NZ in one of the sessions I was in.
Others in the group have used their sessions to focus on their morning routine, workout, emails, writing, client work, phone calls. It is your choice, and lovely to hear what others are working on, and what progress they have made.
The accountability is there, but it is mostly to yourself. I am pleasantly surprised how much it made me want to sit and focus on my training. Once my training is complete, I will use the time for blog writing and creating my Social Media posts. I may eventually book some focus sessions in to get house chores done. (You know, those on the when I get around to it list).
Even after only a couple of sessions, I can definitely say that I am a convert. I have met some lovely people and look forward to joining them on future sessions. If like me, you struggle to find blocks of time to spend on your business, attending a Zoom Focus Session can most definitely help with your productivity! Whilst I was mindful of the camera being on, I didn’t find it as distracting as I thought it would be. I am please to say that as a result of 4 sessions, I have nailed a big module on my training course, and written this blog. I’m really looking forward to returning next week to focus on the next module.
Do you find your working time is in limited supply too? If you have training, or find that work in, or on your business always gets put to the back of the queue, then I highly recommend giving online Focus Sessions a try.
You can book a Go Go Done session here: At the time of writing (Jan 2021), Go Go Done are offering a week’s free trial.