Tag Archive: focus


The First 100 Days


ClockCalendar-GreenIn case you hadn’t noticed, the first quarter of the year came and left fairly quickly and April 10th was the 100 day mark. How did you start your year? Was it with solid goals and a plan to carry them out or with just the thoughts in your head about what you wanted to do? If it’s the latter, honestly, that’s the way that about 92% of people started their year; without any focus and or preparation. How you start your year sets the tone for what happens during the course of it, Even though we’re beyond the 100 day mark, you can do a course correction that changes where you’re going as well as the tone and energy that you operate within.

You’ve had days where you felt as though you got up on the wrong side of the bed or you find yourself saying that you want a “do-over”. Most times you are in that space because you’ve started your day on the wrong note, neglecting to create the space that allowed you to set the tone for your day.  We’ve all been there and we know exactly how that feels and we know exactly how those days go. The same is so with the first 100 days of the year.

If you didn’t start the year with intention and focus, you can use today to refocus and get things on track. Change the tone; shift the energy and create what you want to step into. That means getting focused on laying the ground work for what you want. What characteristics do you have to take on to make things happen?

Think about what you want to create; what feelings do you want to experience?  From there, create your goals…all the details and in writing. No cheating or shortcuts. This is your business and your life we’re talking about here so stop playing games. Commit yourself to what you create and then get your plan in writing with measurable results, milestones and start and finish dates.

Then look for the things that hinder you and hold you back and facing them. What kept you from doing this in the first place? Uncover the gremlins that might hold you back from movement. One of the biggest things that you have to is shift your mindset. Mindset is everything. Engage in practices that will continue to shore you up on a daily basis. You can’t just set course and then expect to be on point every day all day. If you haven’t done this, right now you need to pull out your journal or a sheet of paper and get crackin’.

 


Woman Meditating OutdoorsSome see mediation as contemplation or reflection, but meditation is much more than this. It’s a state of thoughtless awareness and of deep peace. That state occurs when your mind is silent, but completely alert. It’s not something that you do, but rather a way of being that leads to inner transformation and a higher level of awareness.

When we look at the results that meditation yields we see that there are numerous physical benefits such as lowered blood pressure, increased immunity and reduced pain to name a few. There are also the mental benefits. Studies have shown that regular meditation leads to increased focus. It enables you to pay closer attention to detail, due to the fact that it helps increase the gray matter of the brain. It also increases memory skills and your attention span which all ultimately contribute to increased productivity.

When meditation is in the mix, the mind becomes sharpened through the focus it gains and it expands. It’s possible to have a sharp mind but without that expansion, you end up with the tension and stress that so many experience on a daily basis. Having the expansion of consciousness without the sharpness leads to a lack of action on not only a daily basis, but overall contributing to lack of progress.

Besides all of the other bonuses that meditation affords you, it leads to improved creativity which we all know comes in quite handy in business. This happens because the right side of the brain works actively when you meditate regularly.  That side of the brain is responsible for creating new ideas. That’s how some not so creative people, such as myself, are able to be creative.

Usually when people come to me to learn how to increase their productivity, they’re surprised at my approach. Who would think that you could do so by including meditation in your daily routine? It might seem a bit odd, but I’m here to tell you that it’s true.  Meditation helps boost your productivity. It’s just one part of my holistic approach to getting things done.

 

First Things First


Habit 3-First Things FirstHabit number 3 from Stephen Covey is Put First Things First. This means shifting your focus to place it on your long-term goals instead of things that are more urgent and less important and prioritize the work related to them.  Putting first things first means organizing then implementing activities directly in line with the focus that you create.

Here, things come into the physical realm. One of the processes that I guide clients through is intended to help them get to the important things. We start by looking at everything they have on their to-do list and break the list down piece by piece. Systematically I have them determine the things that aren’t important and the things that didn’t belong on their agenda at all. We then look at the things they have deemed to be important to see if they were in line with their goals. If something didn’t line up, it gets removed from their agenda and they learned how to incorporate their goals into what they work on daily. Increase efficiency by putting first things first.

 

 


Tasks, technology and perceived lack of time are big contributors to lack of focus and some might even view it as a rare thing or something that’s hard to get, which is understandable considering the number of things begging for your attention these days.  With all of the things craving your attention, it’s easy to lose focus or to switch from one task to another before the first is complete.

There are ways of maintaining your focus throughout the day that will keep you on task and help you in the process of completing the tasks that you have on your agenda for any given day.  Having and maintaining focus starts with planning.  If you’re planning on a regular basis, then you know what you’re doing every day, so when you start your day, you know the tasks for that day, when you’re doing them and the priority for each.  Follow your schedule and the priorities, not the bright shiny objects that arise during the course of your day.  If a new task comes up, make a quick note about what it is and keep moving on the task at hand so that you can keep a steady pace.  Later in the day you can come back to the notes that you have and look to see where those new tasks fit or you can add them as you do your planning.  You may also have to keep a time log to help you see how you’re moving from task to task and whether you’re completing one before you move on to another.  It helps to write things down and to be able to go back and see what you’re focusing on.

In between tasks, or in the process of a larger, more involved task, take breaks.  Get away from what you’re doing and step outside and get some fresh air, walk to the kitchen to get a quick healthy snack, or do something else that will just take a few minutes to help break up your day.  Quick 10 minute breaks will give you a boost of energy to help you stay motivated and will actually increase your productivity and will also fuel your focus.

Technology can be the biggest challenge when it comes to maintaining your focus.  You have email, social media and the internet pulling you in.  Set specific times during the day, I recommend two times each day, to check your email.  Turn the email notification off and only check email at the designated times.  Don’t check it first thing in the morning.  Instead wait until 1.5-2 hours into your day to check it for the first time.  When it comes to social media, have a plan.  Know why you’re using it, when your target market is online, what you’re posting and when you’re posting it.  Include tools like Hoot Suite to make some posts for you so that they go up without you having to stop and make the post.  If you’re using the internet for research or other means, remember what you’re purpose is and stick to it. Additionally, use technology to support you in staying focused.  Incorporate reminders for task start and stop times as well as break times.

If you start using these tips to help you stay focused and stick to them by making them habits, each will support you in staying focused and feeding your productivity.


Being organized is a state of mind, so before you can get organized, you’ve got to shift gears mentally.   To shift gears you have to make a conscious choice about how you want to work.

It’s really easy to be clear about what you don’t want or how you don’t want to work.  By nature it’s easier for us to determine what’s “wrong” or what we don’t like about something.  It’s quite another to be clear about what you do want, but necessary if you really want to change a situation.

Of all the things that we are taught when we’re young and as we grow into young adults, we are not taught to manage ourselves or how to organize our space or our time.  If we’re lucky enough to have some sort of clue as to what to do, then life tends to work better than if we don’t have that clue.  For most, being organized is something that we learn.  You might say “I don’t know how to get organized.” and may even believe that it’s just not possible.  I’m here to tell you that it’s not hard to do and that it is possible.  It’s all up to you  and your state of mind.

Your state of mind is where you start.  Where are you?  Are you thinking like a disorganized person?  Shift gears and start to think like an organized person.  What would your life look like if you were organized?  Get real clear and have a vivid picture of what that looks like.

Next ask yourself why you want to get organized.  Maybe you want to save some time; have time to spend with your family or friends; have time to focus on the money making tasks for your business.  Whatever your reason is, allow that reason to fuel you forward.  Let that be your focus and what drives you.

Once you know why or what your purpose for getting organized is, you can create your plan for organizing your space or your time .  What do you want to accomplish; what are your end results and what priority does each have.  Once you know the priorities, you know where to start and in what order to tackle things.  Your plan should also designate the tools that you’ll need to get organized.  When you create your plan, DON’T keep it in your head.  That’s the most dangerous place you can leave it.  When things stay in your head, they don’t become reality.  Get you plan onto paper.  It you prefer an electronic tool, get your plan into it and determine the steps that have to happen to accomplish each of your end results.

Getting clear about what you want, why you want it and creating a prioritized, written plan helps you shift the gears from the disorganized mind set to one of an organized mindset.  Being in action around your plan and your purpose has you operating inside of that space and developing the new habits that you need to get and stay organized, which will give you that extra time with family; to generate money through your business, or whatever it is that you’re looking for.

 

Time and Space (c) 2015, 2011 [ Back to top ]