Do you have an accountability system/coach to keep you on track? What would you do differently if this week were your last days to change, to serve, to grow, to love and to live? Your focus will dictate your behaviour and your outcomes.
“First, you must discover and understand your WHY. Second, you must know your WHAT. And third, you must determine your HOW. Every other thing may be broken down into simple details and little action steps.
Begin with your WHY. It must be big enough to create highly charged neuro-transmitters in your being. It creates a beautiful tension within you. It makes you very uncomfortable and also super excited! You cannot NOT fulfil your WHY.
Settling for a life of mediocrity suffocates and kills your WHY. In living fully, passionately, powerfully and purposefully, you WILL stumble upon and discover your WHY. It keeps you awake, it fills your dreams, it is in your every waking moment, it is your last dying thought.
It energizes your body. It holds your soul captive. It gives your spirit freedom. Your WHY will direct your focus and use of time. Your WHY is the sole reason you exist!” ~Excerpt from the upcoming book: “UN-Locking Your HeArt of Leadership”~
Today’s focus is on FOCUS! The ability to stay focused is probably high up on the list of the top 3 reasons why people with great talents, wonderful ideas and burning passion, either succeed or fail miserably at their dreams.
A lack of clear, consistent and laser-like focus is a recipe for failure and stagnation! To focus on a goal means that you’ve dedicated all your resources to it. The power of focus is that it fires up your spirit of commitment.
What do you wish to focus on this week? In the next 7 days, what are the 3 key goals you desire to achieve? These goals should direct and determine your level of focus. We are constantly bombarded with millions of information on a daily basis. And yet, the human brain has the capacity to handle only a minute fraction of this data at any given time.
In this overwhelming maze of ‘data drowning’ and information overload, how then can we avoid the many distractions around us and still maintain our sense of focus? Your purpose will determine where your focus goes. The more aligned you are with your values, the more congruent you will be in your use of time. If you are unclear about your purpose, you may find this dissonance reflected in your use (or misuse) of time.
This week, here are 4 key things that you must manage effectively to enhance your habit of focus: Time, Money, Energy and Relationships/Networks. These four resources will direct your sense of focus.
In a 24-hour window, there are many dimensions of Time but most people are conditioned by society to focus on just one: 9 am to 5 pm. Based on the consistent feedback of successful entrepreneurs and professionals over the years, the following time slots should also be paid attention to: a) Between 6 am and 9 am, AND b) Between 6 pm and 9 pm. These are the periods when you can leverage your time, ideas, network, skills, passions…and transform them into wealth. Take the time today to reflect on the following terms: i. ZIGA: Zero-Income Generating Activities; ii. VICA: Value/Income Generating Activities.
Everyone has 24 hours in a day, period! You cannot save, bank or invest time. All you can do is spend it! Now, determine how much of that time you will allocate to God, Self, Family, Work/Business, Hobbies/Passions, Community.
Use a time management system to plan and schedule all your activities! EVERYTHING goes on your calender. It serves as a life-map of your whole day/week. It is important that you make the time to track your time or you’ll be controlled by time and events.
Recognize the patterns in your use of time. Are you always late for meetings and project deadlines? Do you procrastinate often? Are you a time hoarder or a time waster? Do you leverage your time effectively by planning, delegating, measuring and re-assessing?
What are your time thieves? Examples: what is the the amount of time spent on social media, unplanned and unproductive ‘Starbucks conversations’? Are you often trapped in random meetings/events that seem to last forever, without any clear cut agenda? Can you identify your non-income generating activities? Where are your time gaps?
Do you pay attention to activities that drain your energy? And do you have clarity on your high-value activities (that is, wealth, joy, and value-generating activities)?
The more you study, reflect and understand the patterns you are running, the better you can lead yourself and consequently, manage your time more effectively.
Note: Sometimes, you may need the services and guidance of a qualified coach in order to identify and pattern-interrupt these embedded unconscious programs. Newer and more effective strategies may also be installed in your neurology to replace the old, unproductive ones.
Money, like anything else is simple energy. The less you focus on money as a tangible product and more as a symbol of exchange, the better your mastery of it deepens.
Track your spending, earning and saving habits. Separate your personal expense from your business expense. Create online files or physical folders to keep track of your money.
There are many money management software that will do the job. Quicken is an example. Your net-worth flows directly from your self-worth! In terms of money goals, have a clear focus in the next 7 days.
Are you focused on debt elimination, wealth creation, legacy creation, savings, investing, or a combination? Choose one area and develop a plan for it. Your choice of focus automatically drives your behaviour.
For example, if your focus is on debt elimination, here are some steps that may apply:
i. Financial assessment of your current personal/business debt level.
ii. Names of all the lenders, amount owed, interest rate, term of loans.
iii. Are the payments current or in default?
iv. For payments that are in default, call all the lenders and work out a feasible arrangement to get the loan back on track.
v. Consider getting a part-time job, asking for help from friends/relatives and/or starting a business to augment/accelerate the loan payment.
vi. Seek professional financial advice and solutions from a certified money coach, financial advisor or credit counsellor etc.
vii. Take ACTION in at least one area of your life and the positive effect will spill over into the main area of concern. For example, if your biggest pain point is debt and you find yourself stuck in finding solutions to it, simply shift your focus to another area that needs action such as exercising daily and eating healthy to promote overall physical well being or you may choose to simply de-clutter your home and office.
You may also take action by improve the quality of your closest relationships by deepening the levels of intimacy, trust and communication. These seemingly non-related action steps can actually trigger solutions for the primary debt elimination challenge.
The idea is based on the fact that we are a holographic, interrelated entity and taking positive action in any area of our sphere of life, creates a corresponding effect on other areas. This is because all learning, all behaviour and change happens at the unconscious level and manifests consciously.
The unconscious mind communicates with and understands symbols. When we constantly focus on and build new, healthier habits, we tend to deepen the rapport with our unconscious mind and it begins to trust, respect and offer up the solutions needed.
Everything and everyone is energy. We are all exchanging energy with the world all around us. However, we choose how we share energy with others. And, we are also responsible for accepting/engaging/using/channelling the energy directed at us.
The moment you wake up in the morning, you are creating your own energetic field. You have the power to co-create the reality you wish to experience. Whatever you choose to focus on will become manifested in your world. The key is to strictly focus on only what you want.
Relationships are fundamental to your experience of and quality of life. How you engage with individuals, groups, communities and your inner/outer world plays a role in whom and how you use your power of focus. Clarity of purpose means that you have a deep awareness of the opportunities and people around you. We constantly exchange energy with others and every interaction is an exchange of values.
Where is your focus when building up relationships within your family and at work? Are you able to separate people from their behaviour? Are you able to set clear boundaries in your interactions? Are you caught up in the ‘drama’ or are you choosing to focus on the learning and insights inherent in all relationships?
In your business,the ability to focus on providing solutions to the needs and challenges of your clients will make you successful.
Here are simple things you may do to build stronger relationships:
i. Be a leader and LEAD! No excuses, period! Decide on what you really want: are you building a solid client network based on value and service and is thus characterized by repeat sales, loyal customers, organic referrals and sustainability OR are you simply focused on conducting one-off sales, eliciting both unhappy buyers and negative reviews.
ii. It’s all about the other person, and rarely about you! Listen! Listen! Listen!
iii. Invest your time and focus on and get to know people, connect with your team; call them, introduce yourself, learn about them, engage them.
iv. Understand their ‘why’. What are their goals, passion…Why are they on your team? Why are they your clients? What are their expectations from you?
v. Be upfront and open. Relationships thrive, based on integrity, trust, respect and excellent communication.
vi.Acknowledge their successes, no matter how small. Offer solutions, ideas, options…to their challenges.
vii. Recognize that some customers are not right for your service offering and that some people should not even be on your team and are misaligned with your culture and values,….so be a leader and fire them! Celebrate their milestones…..send them birthday cards, congratulatory events on key milestones and achievements.
Focus! Focus! Focus! Practice saying ‘NO’ to the things that detract/distract from your purpose and say ‘YES’ to your dreams. Choose to set your eyes, heart and action on the outcome. I hope you have a lot of fun this coming week as you re-focus your life and business.
The preceding is a guest post from Juliet Ume, MBA –Strategic Interventionist, Wealth Management Consultant & Leadership-Coach at Whole Woman Network. Juliet is the author of the upcoming book: “UN-Locking Your HeArt of Leadership.” She is an avid Life Connoisseur and a passionate advocate of WomEntrepreneurship, Leadership Training, Investment & Financial Literacy for women. Her mission is simply to engage, educate and empower women, regardless of their levels of income or background, to return to ‘wholeness’ and live Healthier, Sexier, Wealthier Lives using Faith-based, Scientific and Universal (Common-Sense) principles! Follow her on Twitter: @wholewomaninc, @julietumeinc.
- A Happy Medium: Work-Life Balance Tips for Busy Careerists (staples.com)
- Work-Life Balance As an Entrepreneur (wonderfultips.wordpress.com)