the rest of you follows, including your energy, emotion and actions.
Have you decided what you want to focus on today?
Or do you do what most do… let the outside decide for you.
In order to get what you want from life, you must not only be laser-focused, you must also pay attention to where you place your focus.
What you focus on determines how you feel
Your brain come up with stuff to distract you.
It’s one of those things our brains will do all day if we let it go unchecked. But these thoughts are not coming from your higher brain area. This is where your intention and will come in. It’s where you are tested.
It’s easy to let the flow of automatic thoughts push your focus around like a flag in the wind. All sorts of useless, dis-empowering thoughts churn up on a regular basis.
Most of these thoughts center on
- fear, doubt and anxiety
We struggle with this. I certainly do. And I have to keep relearning the lesson to leave that junk alone.
But there is something to do about it. You don’t have to accept of life plagued by these sorts of thoughts.
Deciding what to focus on is an act of taking responsibility for your life.
What to focus on is a decision each of us make on a moment by moment basis. If you don’t take conscious control, your subconscious is happy to jump in and fill in for you.
That can be good or terrible depending on what programs you have installed in your brain. If you have patterns of feeling those dis-empowering emotions, then that is what comes up again and again. It will come up so often it becomes part of your personality, and when that happens it’s where you go automatically.
Quite a few of us have these negative patterns installed in our brains, and they make life much harder than it needs to be.
Don’t let that happen. Decide once and for all that you are going to choose what you focus on.
Then do it.
Focus is a skill
Some have an easier time finding their focus than others, and most of us have had our focus seriously damaged by multi-tasking and constant interruptions.
In college, I could be mega-focused on solving problems, but in recent years, like everyone else, I’ve let my attention bounce around at the mercy of electronics.
Well, I’ve come to claim it back, and I hope you will do.
I’ve been studying lately how to rebuild this skill. I don’t just want normal focus, I want the laser-focus bordering on obsession.
I want to be able to steer myself away from those pesky emotions that lock me in victim mode. I want to have such control that they are no more than whispers in my mind before I am consciously shifting my attention to something constructive.
I’ve called it a skill, but it’s really a lifestyle. It gives you ultimate power over one of your greatest assets in creating the life you want: your mind.
Without the help of your mind, you will never have the life of your dreams.
So now let’s think about strategies to rebuild our focus.
Strategies for focus
This is an easy strategy. All you need is a series of empowering questions to ask yourself:
- What can I learn from this?
- What is beautiful today?
- How can I make this moment more enjoyable?
- What am I grateful for today?
I ask myself a series of such questions everyday. It always improves my mood. It’s a simple journal exercise I run through. But here’s the question: When those stray thoughts come up are you going to grab onto one of these? It takes training.
Meditation installs a super-power in those that do it regularly for an extended period of time.
It trains the brain to focus on what the meditator wishes it to. Brain scans of Buddhist monks show different activity in the brain compared to the rest. This isn’t an overnight quick fix. It is a practice.
Turn it off
This is a relative quick fix.
At the very least turn off the notifications on your phone while you are working. Otherwise, put it away, turn on airplane mode, get rid of it.
Whichever you choose, understand that these devices are fragmenting our attention and making it extremely hard to concentrate on anything.
They degrade your working memory and make it hard to return back to work and to remember what you were doing.
If you want focus, remember that you control the device, not the other way around
This is another quick-fix, so to speak. Multi-tasking is a bad habit for people that don’t know the value of their time and attention.
Do one thing at a time. Your brain doesn’t multi-task. It’s only an illusion.
If you are trying to do several things at once, understand that your brain is switching back and forth between tasks and you are wearing it out, and losing your ability to focus.
Focus can be yours
Superior focus is built over time.
It takes a mindset of iron to manage it in our world. There are a zillion voices screaming for your attention, and most of it is pure garbage designed to distract or give you a brief moment of pleasure.
Your mind is a treasure of immense value.
It determines the track, the quality and the destiny of your life. It deserves some serious care, starting today.
Choose what you will focus on today. Make it something that fills your spirit and mind with power and energy. Use these emotions as the raw fuel of your actions.
With a laser-focus you can achieve impressive things. Don’t accept less of yourself
Focus is taking responsibility of your life and what you become, don’t leave it to the winds and beeps of distraction.