In one of my recent posts, I wrote about the importance of focus on achieving a successful life and also laid down a few tips to improve your focus.
However, developing focus is not an easy task.
It is not something you can achieve overnight.
It calls for a set of actions that you follow regularly.
Here are six more tips that can help you strengthen your focus and in turn, help you achieve your goals.
1. Set a Schedule
When you have vague goals and plans, it is not easy to work towards achieving them.
So, the first step in improving your focus is to make sure your goals are clear and your plans are well thought out and most importantly, that you have a schedule for every step of the way.
For example, saying you want to spend more time with your parents is vague – write it down as “I will call my parents every Wednesday and Friday and meet them on Sunday.”
A schedule ensures you have a clear picture of what you need to do and this makes it easier to focus and actually perform the necessary actions. Some people even find that using their Smartphone to set reminders or alarms for a particular task work out very well.
When there is something you need to do to achieve a goal, do it at once. Stop procrastinating.
Doing something right away is beneficial in two ways – for one, it allows you to get the task done and more importantly, you do not block valuable mind space with thoughts of having to do the task you postponed doing.
Often, it is the starting that is difficult; once you begin, the actions just flow and before you know it, the job will be completed.
If you have decided to write a few lines in your diary every evening, don’t postpone it until after you watch your favorite late-night show; take a few minutes before the show and get it done and over with.
3. Focus on Less
Having too many things to do is a sure fire recipe for a lack of focus – no sooner do you start one task than your mind starts thinking of another. This eats away at your time as well as your concentration.
If you face this problem, make it a habit to jot down the tasks that come into your mind and pick three or four that are the most important right now.
Of these, take up one at a time and focus on accomplishing the goals related to the task; once that is over, move to the next item on your list.
4. Get Back on Track When You Slip
You wake up early and exercise for about a week. Then, because you work a lot, you “forget” to exercise for three days.
Your mind will tell you that you have ruined your wonderful routine and trick you into pushing off getting back to your routine until the next week, or until this important project is over or….you get the idea; before you can realize it, your focus is gone.
The best way to avoid being trapped like this is to tell yourself it was a busy three days, but now, you have to start exercising again.
5. Learn to Delegate
If there is an event and the organizer tries to do everything himself, do you think he can really focus on all the tasks?
Definitely not – that is the reason why there are committees and sub-committees to whom the organizer can delegate tasks while he focuses on the larger picture. Doing something well does not mean you have to do it on your own. In fact, this approach is often counterproductive because of your inability to pay attention to so many jobs simultaneously.
Instead, identify the jobs you are good at doing and focus on them. For all other areas – delegate.
6. Team Up
Sometimes, it can be helpful to work with a friend or a relative who is also trying to build focus. Tell each other about your goals and plans and set up a system of catching up a few times a week to see how well each one is sticking to their decisions.
Often, this external motivation will help you develop focus faster than working on your own.
As most of us realize in hindsight, it is not important to merely have goals – you have to actually take action.
Think well and think hard about why you have something on your goal list. Write down these reasons.
Read this list frequently to get the motivation you need to stick to your quest for success.