Tag: focus


“… we … limit ourselves by an undue emphasis on ‘what’ is important… at the neglect of ‘how’.”           – – Moshe Feldenkrais


How many times have you caught yourself saying, “I need …” or “What the world needs is…”?

It seems to be the way of human nature.  We recognize the void.  We feel the longing.  Yet we go no further than to wish for our dreams to be fulfilled.  We spend our lives in that state of desire, unfulfilled, often raging at the powers that be, God, even life itself for the unfairness of it all.  We WANT. And we expect that something or someone outside of ourselves should make it happen.

Sometimes with great luck (and not a little nagging) we do get what we want.  More often, however, we don’t.  Yet the power to fulfill our desires (or at least make tracks toward achieving them) lies near at hand.  By shifting our focus from “wanting” to exploring the possibilities for achieving, we open ourselves, not just to the potential of having our dreams and goals fulfilled, but to empowering ourselves to be the one to make it happen.

We limit ourselves when we let desire stop us in our tracks.  We blossom when we focus on how to go about achieving those desires.

How will you make your dreams happen?

12. Expand Your Vision

Morrow_GlassYou’ve probably heard it said that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. It’s a simple law of physics. AND it’s impact is often underrated.

As you move in the direction of your goal, each of your actions creates an effect. If you concentrate only on your desired result you lose sight of the impact your actions are having – on you and on the world around you. You lose the ability to adjust when adjusting is simple. You create complexity and often dis-ease. Single-minded fixation is not the answer.

Achievement requires not only an eye on the prize but a diffuse attention to the impact of your actions. A continuous checking in and review of what happens when…

As you move toward your goal, a peripheral view lets you know what is going on around you. It gives you the ability to shift, to adapt to change.

To successfully complete a race, a marathon runner must keep her attention not only on the finish line but on the course, the terrain, the position of the other runners, the state of her body, her energy level and her strategy for finishing. If she stays focused only on the finish, if she stays committed to a preconceived plan, she loses the ability to make the minor adjustments she needs to make her finish strong. She risks burning out before she’s barely begun.

By expanding her vision to take in more than her ultimate goal, by giving herself permission to make small adjustments based on the input she receives, she creates the opportunity to conserve her energy, avoid other runners, side-step potholes, and otherwise make the going easier, more efficient. In other words, she increases the likelihood that she will succeed AND succeed in a way that is harmonious.

Likewise, in the games of sport, business and life, the best players are those who keep their focus broad enough to perceive what is happening around them. The movies may have us love the maverick but all that single-minded pushing toward a goal comes at a cost. The true heroes are those who have the wisdom, skill and strength to recognize the impact of their actions on the whole field of play AND to adjust their actions accordingly.

It is an old cliche but one that is as valid now as ever – “It’s not what you do that matters but HOW you do it.” It’s in the HOW that learning occurs. It’s in the HOW – the process of noticing and adapting – that you find ease and peace, progress and success.

9. Put Your Heart Into It

Dr.-Suess_HeartNow for the BIG disclaimer — Half-assed isn’t good enough.

To truly accomplish great things, no matter how big, no matter how small, you’ve got to pour your heart into your efforts. What you are doing has to have meaning.  The kind of meaning that makes what you are doing matter – to YOU. Yes, what you are doing has to matter to you.

Sure it’s nice if your boss or your parents or your 3rd grade teacher give you kudos and encouragement. But if you really, really are set on doing something better, then what you are trying to accomplish must matter to you. Why? Because if it doesn’t it becomes work, just another job to be done, another task in a long line of tasks that you do because you think you have to.

If you’re doing something simply to please someone else, even small bumps in the road – and make no mistake, there will be bumps – will leave you feeling beaten rather than bruised. Bruises you recover from quickly – pick yourself up, dust yourself off and get on with it. Battered and beaten? If it comes to that and you haven’t got passion – well, what’s the point?

If you find yourself blaming, making up stories, losing focus, it’s time to ask yourself – does what I am doing really matter to me?

If yes, wrap your heart around it and keep on keeping on.

If not, maybe it’s time for a slight shift in your course.

Ask yourself, “How can I embrace what I am doing? How can I bring my heart to the task at hand? How can I do this in a way that is authentic to me?”

Remember, too – this is about loving what you do, not necessarily liking it. Love what you do as a parent loves a child, as a pet owner loves their pet. Stand by yourself and your actions as though they really matter to you because – they DO.