Feature article by Candice Bowles, North Vancouver, BC
Focus can make or break you. Why is it that when we're under a deadline we get so much done? Have you noticed that often your most successful actions have been when you were really committed or really desperate to make a change?
So often we navigate big things successfully because our desire or need to see it materialize helps us focus on the goal and let go of comfort zones and excuses. It even enables us to push through fears that have held us back before.
So, what can we do to enjoy the benefits of greater focus on a regular basis? Here are 7 ways to improve your focus (from the big picture to everyday tactics).
#1 Revisit your business vision
A clear and inspiring vision statement will help your long term focus and your everyday decision making. Very simply, write out in one sentence what you want your business to achieve. Include these four aspects: who you want to impact, how many of them, what effects you want to have on them and where they are.
#2 Clarify your goals for the year ahead
With your vision in mind, clarify what goals you'll need to accomplish in the year ahead in order to make your vision become a reality. Then break down those big goals into monthly goals.
#3 Set your priorities at the beginning of each month and week
At the beginning of each month, review your monthly goals. Update as necessary and clarify what needs to happen each week to see those goals realized. At the beginning of each week (or end of the previous week) a quick review will identify the top priorities for the week ahead.
#4 Front load your week and each day with the most important and urgent "To Do's"
Getting these important and urgent items off your plate is good for business. It will also help you get to the more creative and essential tasks later in the week. (Don't confuse these with less important but seemingly "urgent" items.)
#5 Set a timer for 15 minutes
Sometimes all we need is a way to block out distractions. Put yourself on the clock to help yourself get started on a task you've been avoiding. Focusing for 15 minutes is often a great way to break through the inertia.
#6 When need be, change your location
When your physical environment is impacting your focus, change your location. Even if it's just for a short time, go to the library or a coffee shop. You may even need to leave your laptop behind, take a notepad and go to the park!
#7 Make sure you are rested
Good focus can elude us when we're simply too tired. On a daily basis you may need to switch your computer off at a specific time. On a weekly basis you may need to take a day off from switching the computer on at all (when last did you try that?) or build in time to exercise.
Making it happen
Do what you need to do to make sure you are fresh and focused behind the wheel of your business! The time saving alone will make it worth it. Working towards your vision with intention, creativity and energy will make it happen even sooner!
© 2010 Candice Bowles Consulting. All rights reserved.
Online Marketing and Business Consultant Candice Bowles publishes the award winning 'eLaunch to go' biweekly ezine. If you're ready to take your business online, gain recognition for your expertise and love the work you do - even more, get your FREE tips now at www.CandiceBowles.com