The power of focus

At this time of year you hear people talking even more than usual about how much they have to do, how little time they have and how stressed they feel by it all. Having too many things to do can lead to that result. They get done, but with what impact on your wellbeing and state of mind?

  Hilary Jeanes of PurpleLine Consulting writes:   Follow One Course Until Successful

When you want to achieve a goal or change something about your life, you have to make it a priority and create space to pursue that idea. 

For example, deciding to change your job or career takes time and effort. You need time to research, apply for jobs or develop your idea for a business. It won’t happen unless you give it attention.   One of the things I notice a lot with clients is that they want to be able to fit EVERYTHING into their lives. There’s nothing they want to say ‘no' to or stop doing.     Concerned about missing out in some way, they face the same issue with distraction - email, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. If you’re not on there all the time you wonder what you are missing out on.    Spreading yourself thinly leads to exhaustion, overload and overwhelm. Contrast that with FOCUS - choosing a few things to concentrate on and do well.   Are you that busy person who always gets things done at work? Consider the risks and benefits. Is it in your interest to take on that extra task - are the things you take on YOUR priorities or someone else’s? How will taking on that new task affect other, more important things you have to do?   Perhaps you are a people pleaser. If so, consider the impact on you and your wellbeing of always saying ‘yes' to other people.   Be discerning. By focusing you will be calmer and be spending time on what’s important rather than the urgent or just plain distracting.   Tips for focusing:   - it may seem obvious… do things you enjoy focusing on - set some goals and review them regularly - block out time in your diary to work on whatever is your priority - identify your number one priority for each day, ideally at the end of the previous day, and make sure you get that done - take time to note and appreciate what’s gone well during the day (rather than what didn’t!).   You may find these questions to ask yourself at the end of the year a useful exercise to do in any free time you may have over the Christmas/New Year break.   Hilary Jeanes is Director of PurpleLine Consulting. She supports individuals and teams to achieve their potential.

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