In my last post, I shared that I chose a word (sort of!) for 2018: FOCUS. Today I’m talking about what the acronym stands for.
Focus kept popping into my brain, probably because I’ve struggled with it for a while. In recent months I’ve felt increasingly distracted. Doing one thing, but thinking of another. I don’t like that feeling. It negatively affects my productivity and happiness, so it’s something I want to change.
F is for Focus.
Focus simply means doing the thing, whatever it is, and paying attention to it. (As much as possible for a mom of 7!)
Happiness really is about being present.
Focus means effective time blocking and putting the phone away. (See this post on mom’s cell phone addiction for tips. I know better, I need to do better.) It means going to the coffee shop again to work. Also, setting better boundaries with my kids when I do have a mom’s helper over.
Focus also means: avoid taking in too many ideas from others, when what I’m already doing is working just fine. I have a habit of seeking input from others when I truly don’t need it (umm, what’s that about?).
In the month of October, for instance, I forced myself to stop reading non-fiction books because I was taking in too many ideas from external sources. Too many choices leads to decision fatigue and paralysis. And ain’t nobody got time fo dat.
O is for Observe.
Last year, this idea kept coming up again and again: the importance of the habit of thinking. Simply setting aside time, on the calendar, to sit and THINK. I thought it was brilliant but didn’t take it seriously. When I did have a quiet moment, I filled it with reading or picked up my phone (noooo!).
This year, I actually have a 30 minute window scheduled every week to sit and observe. What worked last week? What do I want to accomplish for the coming week? Me, a quiet house, and a pen and paper. Letting the ideas flow.
C is for Consistency.
I have noticed a pattern in my life in which I go full-steam for a period, then get off track. I’m not sure if this is an energy thing or my own form of self-sabotage. Either way, I want to work on being more consistent.
This ties in to focusing on my OWN ideas and fully implementing them until I reach a goal. (Instead of seeking input from others that, so often, derails me instead of helping.)
U is for Unafraid.
I’ve done a LOT of things this past year that knocked the diaper right off my hiney. The biggest of which was to start a direct sales business.
People would be surprised if I told them how often I do things that scare me, how often. I appear cool and calm on the surface, but I have a ton of fear and anxiety.
Feeling fear, however, is almost always a signal that I need to move towards whatever it is. Why? Because our fear systems are broken. There is no saber tooth tiger chasing you. Your own brain is the bogeyman!
Most people don’t realize this, and view fear as a sign that they need to stay away from whatever-it-is. That’s a recipe for a stuckness and not making the most of your life.
S is for Schedules/Systems.
I’ve always been a fan of systems and schedules, but this year I need to get positively militant (with myself). (A fantastic phrase I heard recently that I wrote in my planner: “My vision is a ruthless dictator.”) Using my Erin Condren planner and sticking to a weekly schedule and morning routine need to be disciplines.
Some systems I implemented in recent months:
I hired a mom’s helper twice a week. I have a bi-monthly housekeeper. My groceries are delivered courtesy of InstaCart. Bulk cooking one day a week. Downloading the 7 minute workout app and doing one daily. Etc.
So that’s it! I hope it’s helpful. Those 5 words don’t feel overwhelming and will help me stay on track this year.
What are your 2018 goals?