We live in a world of distractions. With email, cell phones, texts, tweets, Facebook and all the others, it can be really hard to keep our eyes on the proverbial ball. But if you take a look at high-achievers, it’s one of their most common strengths.
Very few, if any, people really stumble upon success. As Eddie Cantor reportedly said, “It took me twenty years to become an overnight success.” The road to greater things can be quite long, with a lot of obstacles and scary things that jump in your way. The better you are able to maintain your focus, the better your odds are of achieving your dreams. Great idea in theory – but how do you do it?
Perhaps the best technique is to learn how to create a sense of urgency in what you are trying to accomplish. This is done by having goals, and understanding the consequences of not achieving them. Try this process:
1. Identify something that you would like to achieve, and when you would like to achieve it by. Set a deadline – 3 months, 6 months, and 2 years – whatever.
2. Ask yourself, ‘what are the negative consequences of NOT getting this done.’ Make it as scary as possible. Write it down. Post it on your wall
3. Break down the goal into smaller bite-sized pieces. To meet your deadline, what do you have to achieve by the end of the hour, day, week, etc. Write the scary negative consequences beside it.
4. Set the time-frame for each bite-sized goal. Turn your smart-phone off, disable your email, unplug your phone, turn off the music (no, you actually don’t do better when it’s on) lock yourself in your office and don’t permit yourself to leave until it’s done.
The great thing about this process is that, once you’ve mastered it, you’ll find that your natural abilities to focus and concentrate will improve dramatically.