It’s About FOCUS

When goals are tied to insecurities, that’s when we lose.” Nousheen Rahman.

Fact: We are all works in process.

Question: How often do you get overwhelmed with your process?

I remember taking my strengthsfinder test and one of my top 5 characteristics was ‘futuristic.’

People with the strength of Futuristic have an incredible ability to see the future. They are dreamers and perceivers of what could be, what might be, and then in turn direct their lives toward this future….this same person may be perceived as lacking any motivation or ambition for the here and now.” Brian Schubring.

Accepting and truly believing that I (and we) are forever works in process is already hard to grasp sometimes. It’s like we know we are not perfect but for some reason we keep trying to work towards a ‘perfect’ that doesn’t exist. One thing I’ve realized also is that sometimes we can get so caught up in overworking the process that we get into a never ending cycle of ‘fixing’ ourselves. We are so busy trying to rush through the growth, the healing, the learning that we often miss the true essence of what a process is for anyways. We don’t slow down enough to actually FOCUS on the here and now.

I want to share 5 ways which I’ve used to help me when setting goals. I love setting goals but I always need to remind myself of how to FOCUS once those goals are set.

Focus: As already said it’s important to set goals and to work towards self development. But it’s also easy to get lost and stuck in a forever planning mode (which happens to me a lot). It’s key to not only set the goal but then break down the goal into more manageable tasks that you can work on continuously.

Goal: Start a podcast for the year.

Focused tasks:

  1. Get soundcloud.
  2. Select a topic of discussion for the show.
  3. Do a 5-10 minute podcast at least once a week talking about the podcast topic.

Own: What do you have control over? What are you responsible for? Every goal we set should have us at the center. What I mean is that we have to be the ones that can be held accountable for the results. Though some goals will and do involve other people, it is ultimately our responsibility to work on and do the things which set them up. You have to feel like you have ownership over the goals you set. That there is something you can do (even small) that moves you in the direction of where you want to go.

Celebrate: It’s funny how we set great goals for ourselves but when we accomplish them we barely spend any time acknowledging what we have done. Instead we move right on to the next thing we need to ‘fix.’ This is something that I have struggled with because sometimes it seems nonessential to celebrate myself, let alone for something I believe I should be doing anyways. I’m not saying we need to pat ourselves on the back for every single thing that we do because we are supposed to and it’s expected of us. But what I am saying is that it never hurts to stop and recognize the good work you’ve done and just give yourself a minute, an hour a day (whatever you need) of celebration.  

Upgrade: If you’re like me, it’s easy to get into the habit of writing lists and checking items off. It feels good to check stuff off but sometimes I realize that I am being stagnant. I am setting goals and tasks which have already become habit to me and they no longer challenge me to improve or grown. When you realize that your tasks are more about how much you get done and not the value the actual task has on your goal, your may want to reevaluate your goals and see if it truly is something that is challenging you. I think the key about being in process is that we are always growing in a certain area. We don’t have to grow in all areas at the same time but we also know that as we go through our journey we should see progress.

Sustain: I heard a quote once that getting success is actually easier than sustaining it. With respect to the fact that we all have a different definition of success, it’s also important to know that even when you reach it, it takes work to maintain it. Look at someone like Serena Williams. It’d be one thing if she’d only won 1 title. It’d would still be a great thing worth celebrating. But Miss Serena has won 23 titles in her career. 23! This doesn’t happen by chance. This happens through habit, consistency and hard work. It’s the same with our goals. As we set them and work towards them, we should constantly be focused on sustaining what we have learned and how we have grown.

So I always feel like I am somewhere between my big visions for the future and being in the moment. Process is so simple to understand in theory but harder to actually accept and be in while going through it. The Journey continues!

What is something that has been hard for you in your process?