I want to spend my time here on earth doing things that add value. This seems obvious, and it is, but how do I that effectively with out having excessive false starts, or overwhelming my self and regressing backwards instead of improving. Focusing is how I make that happen.
Each day there are three parts of my life:
- External work: given to me by other people at my work, or where I volunteer.
- Life: errands, rest, Bible study, reading, etc.
- Projects: internally motivated tasks
Some days I only do things in two of those categories, other days it feels like I will only do one, but in general those are the three blocks in my daily life.
Projects in my life are focused on two things. Either improving myself or improving the world around me. These two focuses allow me to remove projects that have no long term benefit or are there because of social pressure.
Focusing on one major thing at a time has been documented as being the only real way to build habits and make consistent growth as a human. Anecdotally trying to make major progress in more then one thing at a time is next to impossible. I struggle really hard at figuring out what is the best choice to focus on at any particular time. I usually end up focusing on one thing per week and really don’t make any significant progress because of the lake of focus I have. I am going to follow the advice of many people and research studies and focus on one major thing until that becomes habit or is completed.
People think focus means saying yes to the thing you are focusing on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundreds of other good ideas that are there. You have to pick carefully [what you say yes to] ~ Steve Jobs
Without saying no, I could easily fall into doing a thousand other good things, but miss doing the one thing that I feel is great or miss creating a foundation for future projects by saying yes to other projects to soon instead of waiting and building a strong foundation beforehand.