When you choose to focus it is very important to understand why the focus is important. One of the reasons people haven’t been able to focus on what they need to achieve is that they haven’t defined their benefits and their losses. If some people know the value of what’s at stake if they do not focus on what to achieve, they would have changed their attitude.
There’s one illustration I like to use when I teach on goal setting. Years ago, I decided to change the approach to teaching goal setting. Rather than opening the teaching with how to set strategic goals, I started talking about why goals fail. That’s because I figured many people already know how to set goals. Whether short term, mid-term or long term goals, people certainly know how to set goals even if the details are not clear.
What’s missing is the understanding of the distractions and the many other reasons the goals are failing. Now one of the things I share is about weight loss. I see many people struggling with weight loss and I often ask a simple question. If you were struggling with weight loss and you met the son or daughter of the richest man in the world who wants to marry you in one month but wants you to lose weight, would you get serious with the weight loss programme? Now some will say they aren’t motivated by money but many will certain get serious and lose that weight they were struggling with. For some others, money may not be the strongest motivation but there is always something that can help all of us get serious about what we intend to do.
With that out of the way, here’s the essence of focus:
- Without focus you’ll chase many things and dissipate energy easily – You can’t afford to be everywhere. You can’t be going after everything. You need to decide one either a few things or just one thing that you want to go after.
2. When there is no focus, you’ll not know what is important and what is not important to you – If you don’t have a clear focus, you will go with everything that’s thrown at you. Others will try to tell you what’s important and it will be hard for you to judge if it’s important or not. There were times others tried to force me to do something they considered important. I was able to decline or stay off because I had clearly set what was important to me.
3. In the absence of focus, every opportunity seems good to you. You will definitely struggle with defining what’s called a good opportunity too if you don’t have a focus. Clearly, one major essence of focus is for you to determine what good opportunities are and to be able to pursue them.
4. The essence of focus is for you to make better choices in life – With a clear focus, you can make better choices. Any choice you make outside of a clear focus may not be a good choice since there’s no end point in mind. Focus helps you make more informed choices or long term choices rather than choices that only gift you temporary satisfaction.
5. With focus, you can spend your energy on the most important things rather than trying everything out – Maybe the most important essence of focus is to be able to channel your energy towards the most important things in life. It is one thing to know what’s important to you and focus on it. It is a completely different ball game to channel your energy towards only the things that matter.
As a human being, you do want to spend your most productive years chasing things that don’t matter. Many have done that and now they are regretting it. This is not because they are dead. It is because they no longer have the energy to chase what matters or what counts. Now that you still have the energy, focus and spend your energy on only the most important things in life. If you have lost some energy, you can still choose a focus that does not require so much energy but the brain or wisdom you have in you. Now is the time to choose your focus and run in that direction.