Most people dabble their way through life, never deciding to master anything in particular. – Tony Robbins
What does that mean?
This is the longer version of the quote: “One reason so few of us achieve what we truly want is that we never direct our focus; we never concentrate our power. Most people dabble their way through life, never deciding to master anything in particular.”
The short quote talks about not mastering anything in our lives. Instead, it says we spend our time doing a little of this and a little of that. In the end, a lot of little things have been accomplished, but nothing that truly tests our abilities, or gives lasting satisfaction.
The longer quote points to one reason in particular for this behavior and result; lack of focus. We have a tenancy to get the things on which we focus. Focus on a lot of little things, get a lot of little accomplishments.
If you want something bigger as a result, you’re going to have to stay focused on it long enough to get something done. If you can’t stay focused, you certainly won’t master it, right? And that is the problem for most of us, isn’t it?
Why is staying focused important?
Um, what was the question again? If that’s the way you go through life, is it any wonder that you’ve not accomplished as much as you had hoped to get done? Being able to focus, even if only for short periods of time, is a critical life skill.
Sometimes the focus is very strong for a very short period of time (like writing a book in a month). Other things take a bit less focus, but take years to complete (like raising kids). But you still have to stay sufficiently focused, at least for the duration of the activity.
Can you imagine the level of focus it takes to become a surgeon, with all the years of school and practice? You certainly wouldn’t want them wandering off before they were done with you, right? Yet we walk away from half-finished projects all the time. Or is it just me that has that issue?
Where can I apply this in my life?
Again and again, it comes back to focus. It doesn’t matter how good you are at something if you keep getting distracted and wandering off. The best fire fighters would be useless if they couldn’t stay focused on the task at hand, which is saving lives and then saving property.
When we were little, despite all the sayings about the attention span of a baby or of a toddler, we managed to master walking, talking and eating. And we mastered many other things as well. We managed to stay focused just long enough to get it together.
In today’s modern world, adults are often multi-tasking (which is a fancy name for goofing up more than one thing at a time), which requires our focus to be many places at the same time. How well does that work for you? I know it doesn’t work out all that well for me.
What techniques do you use to help stay focused? I tend to use lists and break projects down into suitably sized sub-projects. I try to clear my calendar so I have an uninterrupted block of time of sufficient size to accomplish my tasks. Feel free to add any you have in the comments section.
In order to stay focused on a particularly large or long task, consider dividing it into smaller chunks. Each of the smaller chunks will likely take less of your effort and time, and hopefully stay within your ability to remain focused.
To keep track of where you are, and what remains to done, consider a list of the steps and sub-steps necessary. When possible, put down how much time you think it will take to finish. Then, the next time you have an hour free, look at the list for something that will take an hour and get busy.
Since we all need to relax from time to time, plan some fun times into each week, but remember to set an alarm. That way you don’t have to worry about losing track of time and not having enough time afterwards to get things done. You don’t want to come back late from a break and have to work twice as hard to catch up, right?
The world is full of shiny objects, vying for our attention. Commercials and ads are designed to do that, but many other things draw our focus away from what is important. Like anything else, you’ll get better with practice.
Stay focused, and keep getting better at staying so. Pick something about which you are passionate, and get busy. Don’t dabble, and stay focused. Do great things, and enjoy doing them.
From: Twitter, @kimgarst
confirmed at : http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/t/tonyrobbin165101.html
Photo by MIke Kline
- Wait…What Was I Doing? (algonquinstudios.com)
- The Power of Focus in Life and Business (cortneyholmes.wordpress.com)