What is an area of your life that feels most important to you right now?
Here are your options:
- Physical Health
- Rest and Recreation
- Inner Personal Life
Everyone has a different area of life that is most dominating. Perhaps by choice, or perhaps not. And these life seasons ebb and flow. What feels most important and dominating right now, may feel less so in a few months. That’s totally normal.
(If you’re curious, for me, right now, it’s relationships. More specifically, my family. My wife and I have 3 boys at home (ages 5, 4, and 1) and I’m wanting to give an above average amount of time and energy to my family right now.)
Now, take that area of your life, and look at the sliding scale below.
On the scale of “focused versus un-focused”, how clear, focused, and in control do you feel about that one area of your life which is most important right now?
In case that wasn’t painful enough, now think about about the other 5 areas. Or don’t.
(To be candid with you, most conversations I have with folks about this, they usually can put one or two areas of their life in the middle of that scale, and the rest of the areas go to the far left. Why? Because thinking about this stuff can be very overwhelming. And so it gets put it off until “later”. That’s why having a “now do this” type of program is so wildly helpful. It removes the overwhelm and paralysis and gets you moving again.)
What an Un-Focused Life Looks Like
Here’s a chart showing some of the most common ways to spot someone who is un-focused versus someone who is focused.
When you’re over toward the left on the “un-focused” side of things, you don’t feel in control. It’s stressful. You don’t feel like there is any breathing room. And you’re so frequently responding to the urgent issues of others, that you lack any clear plan forward.
However, when you are on the “focused” side, you are very much in control. You have clear goals and also you have the time and energy you need to meet those goals. You are far less stressed out and anxious than your reactive counterpart. You’re thriving.
I have spoken to countless people who feel trapped in that un-focused, reactive state.
Sadly, many of them have given up. It’s not that they’ve intentionally and willingly thrown in the towel. It’s worse than that — they’ve lived without any focus for so long that they’ve become numb to it.
Consider how liberating it will be when you have clarity about your life’s vision, values, and goals. And when your short-term projects are moving you toward your big goals. And when you begin making meaningful progress on your work.
How long have you been trying to gain traction on your projects? How many hours of your day are you spending on things that truly matter? Are your relationships strained because of work or side projects? When was the last time you had the chance to truly rest and recharge?
A lack of control and no clear focus may already be costing you far more than you know.
Why You Can’t Do It All
A huge misconception is that you should be giving your full attention to every area of your life. But, if you’ve ever tried, you know it’s just not possible.
There is no way you can deploy your full attention to your health, your relationships, your finances, your career, your personal hobbies, and your inner personal life all at the same time.
You and I only have enough mental and emotional strength to focus on just one, maybe two areas of our life at a time. Like really focus on them. The other areas simply can’t get our full attention.
And but so, what do you do with the other areas? You certainly don’t want to leave them to pot. You can’t just ignore them.
The secret is in a little thing called routine.
If you recall from Videos 2 and 3, the fifth and final component of living a focused life is having routines. Or you can call them habits. Or lifestyle practices.
In short, by establishing healthy habits and routines for every area of your life, then you’re able to keep them on track even without giving them your full attention.
Successful People Have Learned the Skill of Focus
Think about some of the most accomplished and successful people that you know.
Now, I don’t mean in terms of the most well-off or well-known. I mean, who are the people you look up to as mentors and role models? It could be your spouse
Do you notice how they always seem to know what’s next for them? They’ve got something that they are working towards, and they always seem to get things done.
They have a confidence and motivation that is more than just a personality type. Because it’s a confidence based on focus and clarity. This inner peace that comes from having direction and knowing where you’re going and having a plan for how to get there.
Good news! Diligence and focus are not a personality type. Focus is a skill. And since it’s a skill, it means that you can learn it.
Now, to grow in this skill of living a focused life, like any other skill, means that you have to practice (and practice the right things). What does that sort of practice look like?
That’s exactly what I teach you in The Focus Course. I will also help you with your own lifestyle practices (routines) that you can employ in your own day-to-day life.
All of this will give you the liberty to focus on the areas of life that matter most to you, while still maintaining a healthy balance in the others.
This is one how many of the most successful people keep breathing room in their daily life while also being so prolific and productive. They have a focused life.
On Tuesday, November 14th, registration will open up for The Focus Course.