Nov 082021
 

by Linda-Ann Stewart

"Your ability to focus is the most important success skill you can ever develop." Brian Tracy

“Your ability to focus is the most important success skill you can ever develop.” Brian Tracy

In today’s world, it’s hard to stay focused. It seems that every minute, there’s something to divert your attention. You probably check your email several times a day. Every time there’s a notification from your phone, you have to see what it is. That’s in addition to interruptions from co-workers, family and friends. After a distraction, studies show it takes at least fifteen to twenty minutes to get focused again.

Also, your mind can focus on only one thing at a time. Each time you shift your attention from one thing to another, you’re “task switching” and it burns up extra mental energy. When the entire day is filled with these intrusions, you end the day feeling drained and exhausted, with very little to show for it.

Benefits of Focus

However, when you’re more focused, you feel more in charge of your world, get in the flow and get more done. You also have less stress and overwhelm, because your mind has one thing to do at a time. In addition, you have more clarity, so you make better decisions, as well as being more efficient, effective, and productive.  

Therefore, to achieve your goals and dreams, your ability to focus is vital. Fortunately, it’s a skill that you can cultivate and develop. The more you focus, the more you’re able to focus. It’s just like a muscle. The more you use it, the stronger it becomes.

How to Create the Habit of Focus

You can’t be focused all the time, because the unexpected does happen on occasion. But you can set aside time each day to pay attention to your most important tasks. Schedule time into your day to focus on important projects. Here are some ways you can get started and cultivate your ability to focus.

Motivate yourself to focus. Decide how having increased focus benefits you, and remind yourself of that incentive when you set aside time for it. As you build your motivation, and act on it, focusing becomes a habit. Jim Rohn said, “Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.” Once you establish the habit of focusing, your mind will automatically know what to do when you want to do it.

Use visualization. Choose one task that will move you towards your vision or goal. What is it you want to focus on and achieve in this period? Before you get to work on it, take a couple of minutes to visualize yourself performing your task and accomplishing what you want. This increases your motivation, and primes your subconscious to start solving any issues you might encounter. You’re rehearsing your actions, which then makes them easier to execute.

Eliminate distractions. Find a way to minimize the effects of whatever can intrude on your focus time. For instance, research shows that if your phone is in the same room as you’re in, your mind is always tuned to it. Even turning your phone off doesn’t work. Therefore, put your phone in another room, where you can’t see it or hear it. Turn off your email. Close your door.

Minimize multi-tasking. Constant multi-tasking trains your mind to hinder your focus. However, you don’t have to completely avoid multi-tasking. When you’re performing automatic behaviors, such as doing dishes, watching television doesn’t drain you. Or you can pay bills and listen to a podcast. But when you do activities that need you to think, multi-tasking uses up mental bandwidth and exhausts your energy. Your mind is always seeking something new, and when you multi-task, you jump from one attention getting novelty to another. Multi-tasking triggers the reward centers of the brain, therefore gives you an incentive to repeat the process, which makes multi-tasking addictive.

Strengthen your focus muscle. Set aside time to focus on one task without distractions. Start off with as much time as you can before you need a break. You may need to begin with only ten or fifteen minutes. Each week, increase the time. Aim to have a sixty to ninety-minute stretch of focusing on one topic or chore before you take a break. When you take your break, do something that rests your mind for several minutes, such as going for a walk, getting a drink, or something to eat. This gives your mind time to replenish its energy and get ready for your next work period.

Being able to focus is an inherent talent that we all have. But it’s not an skill that is exercised much, so most people have gotten out of practice with it. With the above tactics, you can cultivate your natural ability, strengthen it, and develop it into a habit that will support your success.

Affirmation:
I have a natural ability to focus and pay attention to what’s important to me. It’s a skill that I can develop and grow through practice. The Universe flows Its energy through my focus, supporting my endeavors and smoothing my path to maximize success.

Watch the accompanying video, Guided Meditation to Focus and Accomplish More.

As a vision strategist, hypnotherapist, and speaker, Linda-Ann Stewart helps women entrepreneurs and small business owners who feel stuck, immobilized and overwhelmed to to get clear, focused and on the fast track to the next level of their business. To achieve a 90-day goal more easily, sign up for her FREE comprehensive Strategic Vision blueprint at www.Linda-AnnStewart.com/setyourcourse.html. You can contact her at LAS@Linda-AnnStewart.com or 928-600-0452.

Key Elements for Your Success

 Video  Comments Off on Key Elements for Your Success
Oct 172018
 

Having your heart and vision aligned are vital for the success of any venture, whether personal or professional. But they is another key element that you need to be able to propel yourself forward. It’s one that is key for your success and it includes other aspects. Linda-Ann Stewart, vision strategist, will share what this element is and give you some ideas on how to cultivate it in your life.



Transcript:
Thank you for joining me. I’m Linda-Ann Stewart, a vision strategist. Do you wonder what that is? Well, I help people take their vision and focus on the strategies that will bring it into a reality. I’d like to talk about what elements you need to have in place to be successful. The first part of is that you need to align your heart with your vision. From there you create a plan, or strategies, and then focus on them.

When I talk about the heart, I mean passion and beliefs, mindset. What about you? Do you have a passion for your next step? Do you have any beliefs that contradict it? Your passion and beliefs have to be aligned with your vision, which is your intention and direction you want to go in.

Your vision is why you want to achieve your goals, and what you eventually hope to achieve. What about you? What’s your vision? When your heart and vision are supporting each other, the plan, which is the steps, strategies and tactics to take, is easy to develop. Natural progression. Heart, vision and plan form the foundation of any endeavor, whether personal or professional.

In my hypnotherapy practice, these were the first things my clients and I had to decide on before we start making changes in their lives, whether for stress reduction, stopping smoking, weight management, improving self-esteem, success programming or anything else. Without the foundation to build on, my clients would have failed to achieve their goals.

The next step was equally important. It’s what programmed them for success. It was focusing on the strategies and taking the actions that the plan dictated. Many people pay attention to details or tactics that don’t really help them in the long run. But they feel like they’re getting things done, even though they’re really just in motion. Do you ever feel that?

You can run on a treadmill, but you’ll never actually get anywhere, will you? If you’re running in place, you have to step back off that treadmill and assess if the actions you’re taking are allowing you to make progress.

When you’re not focused, you can easily become scattered, sidetracked and distracted. You don’t want to always be chasing after squirrels, do you? So focus also means to have your priorities straight. You decide what comes first then next, then next after that. You wouldn’t try to scramble eggs before you got a pan onto the stove, would you? If you did, you’d have a real mess, right? Same goes with priorities.

And you have to make sure you spend time on your priorities, and not let someone else dictate what they are. For instance, suppose you’d planned to spend the evening paying bills that were due, but a friend stopped by at the last minute and wanted you to go to a movie with them. If you agree, wouldn’t you have let their priority be more important than yours?

I know paying bills isn’t a fun job, but it was your priority and necessary to avoid late fees. If you didn’t get it done when you’d originally planned, it had to be done another time, when you might have had something else planned.

This can also happen if you don’t have any priorities at all. Then you leave the door open for someone else to decide what your priorities should be. And who wants that?

Having a focus means you also cultivate the behaviors, habits and skills you need. Maybe you need to stop procrastinating paying those bills until the last minute? Or you might want to develop the habit of scheduling social time with friends? Maybe you want to learn more about social media? All of these also take focus and attention, and help take you in the direction of your vision.

Focus is what keeps you on track and progressing. In addition to having heart, vision, and a plan, focus propels you to success. Are you lacking focus in an area? Are your priorities in order? Are you following your priorities? Do you need to establish a new habit or develop a new skill to take the next step? Take just one of these, and begin to act on it. Establish it as a priority and notice how you start making progress.

If you’d like some help in achieving your goals, apply for a complimentary Clarify Your Vision coaching consultation.

Thank you for watching. And I would love to know how you’re focusing on your goal. Take care.

Read the accompanying article, Align Your Heart with Your Vision.

~ Linda-Ann Stewart