Stay Focused for Success

by Ed Martin

If you don’t pay attention when driving, you can end up in the hospital or worse. All it takes is a moment to answer your phone or play with the radio and BAM!!! you’ve hit a cow. Why should it be any different running your business or your life?

What’s Your Brain Doing Right Now?
It’s probably getting ready to wander off about now, wondering where to go next, what link to click. Ooh that’s a funny picture. Stay FOCUSED! We have all gotten afflicted to some degree by ADD. It hits us all the time. Tweet me! Read this! Click here! Answer my text message! You’ve got all kinds of distractions popping up during the day.

This happens with your business, too.  You wanted to redo your website or come up with some new copy, but… something else came up. Happens to everybody. I thought about writing this post 3 weeks ago, but never got around to it. I wanted to, but…

Hey Over Here!!! Let’s Get Started
So now that we know there’s a problem with staying focused, lets get started to fix it. Here’s what you need to do. Set some goals. Stop and think of one thing right now you want to get done in the next month. Think of what the benefit will be when you do it. Be realistic for your goal. Make it something you can measure–did I reach my goal or not. Go ahead.  I’ll wait……

Now, Pick out two or three other things you want to get done, same way. Nothing mamby pamby like “come up with a new idea” or “call a customer” or “write an article”. No good!!

Make them specific, like “write 10 tax articles for next tax season” or “prepare presentation for Wazoot Company and call them” or “redo all the prices on website”. If your task is big, break it into bite-sized little chunks you can tackle one at a time. We’re trying to achieve something here, not climb Mt. Everest so don’t go crazy. but do make it challenging. 

The Secret Formula
You know there has to be one, right?  The big secret for staying focused and achieving the goals you set is: don’t allow distractions. Yep that’s it. Don’t get distracted.

I know that a month is a long time and stuff happens, important stuff, too. But you are focusing on your goals, not that other stuff. The trick is to be able to convince yourself that nothing is more importanat than what you now are doing right now. Stay focused on the goals you set and the benefits you’ll get from them. You can do that other stuff next month.

One way to not get distracted is to have a plan that gets you from where you are now to where you want to be. You can change the plan as you go if you have to–we don’t scratch things on rocks anymore. The big thing is that having a plan keeps you from getting lost along the way, It also helps you measure how far you’ve gone and what shortcuts you can take.

Another way to stay on course is to make sure you work towards your goals every day. Don’t start up some new project or go wandering off to work on something else. Remember those bite-sized chunks? It’s a whole lot easier to write a book a page at a time than it is to do it all in one stretch.

The Payoff
Make sure you get a reward for achieving your goals. I know the joy and satisfaction from a job well done, blah blah blah. Go get yourself something nice!

Move Along Now
You’ve got your task so stay focused for the next month. You know what you have to do. To help, here are a couple of tools to help keep you from getting distracted during your work day.

Dawud Miracle has his 50 minute hour. Dave Cheong has 18 ways to stay focused at work. Dave Allen has written the classic Getting Things Done.

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You can always contact me at MicroBizMadeSimple.

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