Not a new thought, but valuable enough to bear consistent repeating…
FIRST QUESTION: What and Who Do You Pay Attention To?
Think about those things and people who capture your interest or demand your energy. Consider what is happening to your time and energy every day, over a week, and through the seasons.
Sometimes we have no choice, but to pay attention to something. Our work may require this of us, and we cannot choose not to pay attention without risking significant job actions. Of course, sometimes we talk ourselves into thinking that we “have to” focus on some work-related issue, when no particular evidence other than our own thinking supports this.
Other times, when we are honest, we choose the level and quality of our focus in an area and on a person. We probably have much more freedom to change in these instances than we might think.
FOLLOW-UP QUESTION: How Does What You Pay Attention To Help You?
Here are some common topics under which activities and individuals can be grouped. Please note that in some cases, we pay attention to a person because of a goal or the reverse. In those cases, consider the tangible value that derives from your investment of time and energy in that person or activity.
Please add any other major areas not included below to your Focus list.
FINANCIAL: You focus on making and using money through earnings, investments, and the acquisition of valuable things.
CAREER: You concentrate on building professional experiences and reputation in a workplace environment. Titles and authority are important to you.
FAMILY: You nurture familial relationships with children, parents, cousins, and other relatives, along with people you feel close to.
EMOTIONAL: Your concern is primarily about how you feel about others and events, with a goal of healthy interactions and emotional stability.
STRUCTURAL: You work to develop a pleasant and safe environment for yourself and your loved ones.
Also remember that items on your list may overlap with more than one topic.
For example, I used to run 4-5 miles per day and often started my weekend with a race at some local event. As my children grew, I began to enter them in the short races which often accompanied my longer races, producing both health benefits and shared relationships with my children.
ANOTHER QUESTION: How Well Does What Is On Your Focus List Align With What You Really Value?
This is the most important step and the hardest for most of us to do, since it involves really getting clear about what we want out of life.
I would say this is the place where you need some objective help. You alone know best what you concentrate on doing or thinking , as well as what you truly value.
However, a professionally prepared helper can make the process of determining the fit between what you do and what you want much easier than when you slog through the process alone. There’s a reason why professional coaches are coming into the public eye more frequently.
FINAL QUESTION (Two-Parter): 1) What Are You Going To Reduce Or Stop Doing, and 2) What Are You Going To Start Or Increase Doing?
Well, you knew I had to ask this one, right?
Not much point consider your current state of focus, unless you also create specific plans with measurable milestones and clear goals to change your focus where it does not align with your values or goals.
These plans should include something like a “Stop or Reduce” list and a “Start or Increase” list of actions to help you devote more of your focus, and your energy, to the things which matter most.
Having lots of fun asking some very useful questions in the Heartland ….
Image : Presenter Media