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When asked what the number one challenge is regarding productivity, people overwhelmingly answered lack of focus. The struggle is often expressed in the following ways:
How do I stay focused and not procrastinate?
I think in some cases it is not necessarily about the energy or productivity but more about the focus. I am personally struggling with my purpose and finding my way!
- Every day, thousands of ideas pop into my head. How do I identify the best one for me at this present moment in time and get started?
- How can I maximize my time, even with short time slots?
- How can I increase my concentration and focus?
- How can I be decisive without doubting myself?
- How can I accomplish more, instead of leaving multiple projects unfinished?
- How can I avoid bouncing around from task to task and wasting too much time and instead concentrate on completing one item at a time? I want to be better organized.
Indeed, in today’s world there are a myriad of distractions. As technology evolves, our attention span has decreased and our preference to multitask has skyrocketed. Society places contradictory demands on all of us; both men and women must be beautiful, wealthy, kind, and on top of that happy.
Remaining focused is a decision.
Many ideas are floating around in my mind. I have always dreamed of writing a book. For years, if not decades, I have dreamt of different subjects. I wrote different frameworks … many frameworks! Yet there was no book. I couldn’t get started on any of my ideas. It got worse when I heard about other authors who published what I was dreaming to say.
I continued to live life, not once pausing to work on my book, because I felt I had to have fun, too. I had lovely weekends with friends. I attended parties. I also had to live in a clean house. There were clothes to wash, furniture to dust, garments to iron… the list never ended.
My paralysis worsened when I was presented with the idea of a soul purpose. What was my soul purpose, I wondered? What if my book did not truly express my soul purpose?
Could it get worse, I thought? Hell yes! One night I had a dream about my life purpose. After that, negativity dominated my thoughts; I couldn’t write. Now that I had an answer to my life purpose, I wondered what would happen if I failed to fulfill it?
Even if I wrote every day, year after year, I still didn’t have a book. Even if I visualized it, a book was not physically in my hands. Even if I felt it was part of my life purpose, a book wouldn’t magically materialize. For years I was paralyzed, because I (well, my ego) pretended not to know what to do.
This happens to all of us when we talk about big, life-changing projects. When we plan to do something important in our lives, our ego comes up with all kinds stories to keep us safe. Our ego is the part of our psyche that wants to protect us from danger. This is fine and dandy when we cross the street. Thank you, ego! However, when we are working towards producing our best work, towards expanding ourselves as a human being, towards recognizing our full potential, he is terrified. The ego doesn’t like mighty things. He doesn’t like bold projects. He doesn’t see the wonderful world that lies on the other side of fear. He just sees change, and that is not good.
So instead, he switches on the TV. He browses Facebook. He tweets. He cleans the furniture. He calls your best friend. He works on the other easy, safer projects that keep you comfortably small.
Staying focused is a decision.
Actually this decision is two fold. The first part is to decide what to do and the second is to keep it up. In other words, you need to make a choice right now and constantly renew this dedication as you go along.
Why now? Think about it. How many summers do you still have? How many sunrises will you still watch? You, just like every other person on this planet, have an expiration date. You don’t know how much time you have left to create all you were meant to create. You have to start this minute. Yes, now!
Make a decision right now.
Not knowing which of your mighty projects to take on is not a good enough reason to stay in limbo. Pick one. Any one. Choose the one that excites you the most. If excitement doesn’t solve your conundrum, flip a coin. Be ruthless. Decide right now. There is no wrong decision.
Think about our dear Einstein. Think about how many scientific papers he had bumbling around in his brain. Think about the myriad of stimulating questions he asked himself. Think about his miracle year. He was traveling on a bus, just pondering all those questions. One by one, he started to write. He was just a clerk in the patent office. He had nothing to lose.
Think about other serial entrepreneurs: Ellon Musk (Tesla, SpaceX), Richard Branson (Virgin), and Oprah. None of them started with the winning project or venture. They all started small, even with the “wrong” project. They learned from their mistakes. They kept moving forward. They continually re-strategized and learned some more. They then achieved greatness, and they are not planning to stop this cycle anytime soon.
You cannot get it wrong.
Once you establish what you want to do, you’ll need to keep it up. I recommend you embrace the AA approach: “just for today.” Every single day, the AA’s of the world make a promise to do something very specific. In order to not wake up their ego, they make this promise “just for today.” Copy this great idea! Make a daily promise to yourself that “just for this period of time” you will take an action that you will define.
I like to work with two time periods. For brand new projects, I give myself one quarter. Three months is a great measurement. It’s equivalent to a season, for instance harvest season. Make a promise to yourself that you’ll work on this project for three months. This period is long enough to prove your ego wrong. At the end of 100 days, you’ll be able to say to your ego: see, I did it and the world didn’t collapse. At this point in time, you may also wonder: if I can do this, what else can I do?
The other time frame is 50 minutes. I give myself this artificial deadline to truly get things done. In 50 minutes you can accomplish one building block of your massive project. You can switch off your phone, block your social media, and the world won’t collapse. Fifty minutes is short enough to stay focused on just one task and long enough to actually get it done.
I sincerely hope this blog moved you and you finally decided which mighty project you’ll take on next. Once you get off the couch and start working toward greatness, you can achieve your goals. However, if you want some extra support and the encouragement of others who are also pursuing greatness, I invite you to check out my program, “A Better Me in 100 Days.” This is a powerful experience that will support you, encourage you, and motivate you to accomplish your bold project and as a result massively change your beliefs a.k.a. rewire your brain. Yes! Finally achieving a mighty goal will benefit you more than just simply completing it. It will literally change your brain and your life. Come and check it out here.
Do you want to do something magnificent with your one and precious life?
Now, I would love to hear from you.
I would love to hear your wisdom.
What's your secret to increase your focus?
Please, share your wisdom directly in the comments below. Let's start a wave of vibrancy, excitement, enthusiasm for life. Let's live fully!
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