The power of focus (part 2)

The Power of Focus

I have no idea how many times I have heard the saying “You get what you inspect, not what you expect.” I even think I understand it. After all, expectations almost always involve assumptions – and we know how grounded and valid our assumptions are. (Not very, but that could just be me.)

Last time, I wrote about the impact of focusing on what you DO want, rather than what you don’t want. Let’s look at focus a little more.

What do we mean by focus anyway? One definition is ‘a concentration of attention or energy on something.’ Other definitions include ‘maximum clarity or distinctness of an idea,’ and ‘special emphasis attached to something.’

I like the combination – clarity of an idea and a concentration of attention.

Sometimes, though, I wonder if that concentration of attention is the right kind of attention. For example – remember the saying ‘a watched pot never boils?’ Well, it does, eventually. And you would not get the result if you put the pot on to boil and walked away, forgetting about it. (Trust me, I’ve done this – all I got was a ruined pot.)

Somewhere in between obsessively watching and totally forgetting lies the path we want.

This is especially important as you delegate activities to your team. You will drive them (and yourself) crazy if you hover over them, micromanaging every detail. And you can’t just give them a task with no guidance and expect them to get it done to your satisfaction.

This is where your planning process becomes valuable. You have clearly defined not only your objectives, but the best way to get there. If you have set milestones in your plan, you have regular times and places to check on progress. And you have specific markers to determine if you and your team are on track.

Are you spending the time to really clarify your ideas and objectives? Are you giving them the right kind of attention to ensure success?

I know we are all busy. And I recommend you set aside at least one hour a week to do this. Aren’t your goals worth one hour a week of your time and attention?

Where are you focusing? It is your choice, after all.

(c) 2011, Terry Monaghan

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Consultant, coach, speaker, trainer and entrepreneur, Terry Monaghan, publishes Now What, an ezine for entrepreneurs and professionals who want to double their productivity, improve their performance, and have a life! If you’re ready to jump start your performance and your results, then get your free tips now at