I know I am not the only who feels like my life pulls me in a million different directions, often on a daily basis. Sometimes it is hard to get everything on my most basic checklist done which often means the attention given to the decisions I make can be lacking. Time often wins out over best intentions and checking things off my list, even if they aren’t done the way I would really like them to be, still feels better than not doing them at all.
But being deliberate about your actions is without doubt a better practice. Whether you’re trying to start a business, grow one (am doing both), do your best at the job you have, or care for your children, how do you find time to focus and get the most out of your day, not to mention your short and long term plans? It is a question—”How do you stay focused?” I often ask of my interviewees. Because being focused often has positive results.
Another related offshoot of being focused is practicing gratitude. It’s an idea that makes me wince sometimes because of its new-age-yness, but there is plenty of research to back up that those who regularly acknowledge the good in their life are generally happier. And I’m not interested in being miserable. Currently I am using The Five Minute Journal—a daily diary concept that has you write down three things you’re thankful for, three things that would make today great, a daily affirmation and an evening follow up on what was great and what would have made the day better. Time does get in my way and a month will go by with no entries, but I try to write in it every morning (evenings not as much). If you use it properly—by not writing down grand, all-ecompassing statements (I am thankful for my health, my children, my life—that sort of thing) and never repeating answers, you can focus on the small goals you want to reach (and look back and see your progress) and remember the little things that bring you joy. I definitely believe continuous small actions can lead to large, positive results.
What do you do to stay focused and get happy? If you’re interested in sharing I’d love to hear your thoughts.