Staying focused on the path you need to follow to achieve your dreams is very crucial to be successful. When you stray from the track, your progress becomes slow, and your dreams seem more unachievable than ever. Without focus, the quality of your work suffers. Because you aren’t giving it your all, you are completing the task just for the sake of it.
“Why do you dwell on things that don’t matter when there are so many things that do?”
How productive we are is also dependant upon how focused we are. There are many ways for our mind to be easily distracted, primarily because of our phones. Eventually, the quality of our work starts degrading which again becomes a cause for stress. When you feel mental burn-out, you need to find ways to deal with it.
Having discipline and staying focused is the leading quality to have to keep working without stopping towards our goals and dreams. If you have been losing focus and the drive to continue your work, then these are some excellent ways to stay focused on your dreams.
1. Keep reminding yourself of the big picture
No matter what it is, there is always going to be something we don’t like. Even if you have your dream job or business you are really passionate about, some part of it won’t excite you as much as the other parts of the work. Maybe you love your business, but hate answering emails, and whenever you have to do it, you lose your motivation to get back to other tasks.
“Having the big picture in mind enables us to overcome the day to day routines that attempt to distract us from pursuing our dream.”
These mundane tasks make us lose our patience and focus. We don’t want to do them, but they are an essential part, so we have to. During tasks that make you feel like this, you have to think if you can do anything to change it. If no, then remind yourself of the big picture. Remind yourself that every little thing adds up to your efforts to fulfill your dream.
“If you spend your life over analyzing every encounter you will always see the tree, but never the forest.”
-Shannon L. Alder
If you have the resources to unload those tasks, then do it. Outsourcing is one of the best ways to focus on what you love and get the work that you don’t find interesting done by someone else. You have to figure out how you can get your work done more effectively by automating, outsourcing, and smart planning.
2. Remind yourself the reason why you started
Entrepreneurship needs patience. Any business needs patience. It isn’t easy to build anything from the ground up. When you start out, the reasons for you taking on your journey are fresh and clear in your mind.
“The most important thing is this: to sacrifice what you are now for what you can become tomorrow.”
As the days pass, your mind gets more and more daunted with daily things that need to be done, short-term goals to be achieved, targets to be met, solutions for problems to be found, etc. While you are busy managing and micromanaging your business, it becomes easy to lose sight of the reason you began this thing in the first place.
It is important to keep reminding yourself of your main reasons for whatever you are doing – your vision, your mission statement, your inspiration, anything that made you take the first step. Otherwise, you will easily hit mental roadblocks that will stop you from succeeding, and you will deviate from your path.
This is why it is advised to prepare a document with your mission statement in the beginning and use it to refresh your memory time and time again. Your mission statement doesn’t have to be rigid, you can make changes over the course of time, but remember to keep the core goal same.
When you keep reminding yourself why achieving something is really important to you, it becomes difficult to lose focus. You start looking for ways to achieve your goals effectively.
3. Maintain a routine
One of the reasons for not being consistent and focused in your work is not following a routine. When you just wing your day, it is easier to get distracted and lose your focus. Knowing how much time to invest in doing what is important, and sticking to that schedule is what takes you a step closer to your dream every day.
“A daily routine built on good habits and disciplines separates the most successful among us from everyone else. The routine is exceptionally powerful.”
Consistency is the key to success. Being consistent with your work, doing a little every day, is what helps you preserve your vision towards your goal. Procrastination and laziness can make you spiral down the unproductive path real quick. You have to be careful when a break turns into hours of nothingness. Quickly snap out of it and do something, anything that will make you feel productive.
“Over time, as the daily routines become second nature, discipline morphs into habit.”
Make a to-do list every night for the next day and follow it to the T. When you make a list the night before, it gives you the opportunity to start the next day with a plan. When you know what to do, it becomes difficult to lose track. Every night, recap your day and make notes as to what you did to reach your goal and what you still need to do.
4. Self impose deadlines, restrictions, and incentives
This might not seem effective at first glance, but if you are an entrepreneur and aren’t exactly answerable to anyone, you will soon understand the importance of deadlines. When you work at an organization, there is someone to look over the work you do. You work in teams, are dependent on each other and are answerable for slacking. All of these things, encourage you to work more and get your work done on time.
“Wasted strokes, like missed deadlines, are preventable and costly.”
You have to use that aspect of a day job and apply it to your business and yourself. Set non-negotiable deadlines for the most important tasks. This will help you learn how to manage tasks effectively, how to multitask, and how to get a job done no matter what.
If just setting deadlines is still not helping you focus completely. Set strict restrictions on yourself. Do not allow yourself to deviate from the task at hand. If you have the urge to stop working and check your phone or play a game or listen to one song, stop yourself. Close your eyes and take a deep breath. Tell yourself that you will be able to do whatever you want, guilt-free, when you get your work done.
“No man, who continues to add something to the material, intellectual and moral well-being of the place in which he lives, is left long without proper reward.”
-Booker T. Washington
Incentives or rewards are a great way to motivate yourself to finish the task at hand. When you have something to look forward to, it becomes easier to run the last mile. When you work on your business, the results aren’t often quick. No sight of results can dim your mood, and you can feel demotivated, everything can seem pointless. You have to avoid that feeling, and that can be done by setting rewards for yourself for completing a difficult task or achieving a small milestone.
5. Focus on yourself before you focus on your dreams
With everything mentioned, it is also important to take care of yourself. Self-care is neglected by many people under the pretense of being busy. Being busy is no reason to neglect yourself and your health. You do not have to follow an elaborate self-care routine. A little something every day is enough.
“Focus on you, until the focus is on you.”
Try to incorporate meditation in your morning routine. Meditation has proven to have many benefits. You can also practice yoga every day. Meditation and yoga are both said to relieve stress and help create a positive mindset. Exercise and eat healthy to keep your body in top shape to continue working.
A positive mindset is important for moving forward in your life, no matter what life throws at you. To achieve a positive mindset you need to focus on –
- Developing good habits
- Getting rid of bad habits
- Cutting off negative people from your life
- Getting rid of pessimistic thoughts
- Starting your day on a positive note
- Keeping a tab on what is important
- Finding work-life balance
These are some of the key things to do to surround yourself with positivity. When your mind isn’t stressed and anxious, the weight of working becomes lighter on you. This is the healthy mental state you need to be in to apply yourself completely and maintain undeterred focus.
All of the ways that I have talked about are really important and helpful to stay focused on your dreams. I know these things work because I have tested them myself and have read the same being advised by many successful people.
When you start something, it is scary and difficult, but your dream keeps you going. As you progress, it becomes less scary but you also lose sight of your dream. Your end goal is something that you have to look at as a destination, like a light at the end of a dark tunnel, that will always help you find a path to reach there. Work like you are in the tunnel, only your dream is what you can see, and everything else is pitch black. It will help you remain focused in your most distracting times.
5 Things to Do to Prepare for the Next Phase in Your Life
Are you experiencing new things and are overwhelmed because of the said things? Taking a step into the unknown future can be scary, but don’t we work for this very moment? While getting out of your comfort zone and exploring things can be frightening, they are exactly what helps you achieve great success.
If you are entering a new phase in life, doesn’t matter personally or professionally, you need to prepare yourself for new responsibilities and an entirely different schedule. It can also make you start feeling a different way and look at yourself in a completely new light. Here are some things you can do to prepare yourself for the next phase of your life.
1. Ace Your Managerial Skills
When you enter new phases of your life, you often have to learn and hone new skills. Managerial skill is something that will come in use in both personal and professional life. Usually, when you level up in your professional life, you have to start interacting more with your colleagues and employees. Higher the post, the more important people skills become.
You have to learn to get work done, even from the most difficult person, without losing your calm or creating a hostile environment. Finding the delicate balance of establishing your authority and also being welcoming can be tricky. But, this is one of those skills that make sure that you get the best out of people.
People shouldn’t be afraid to come to you with suggestions, issues, ideas, or in general. But, they shouldn’t also start taking your authority for granted. You need to be firm when getting work done, and warm when you are receiving the said work. Making people feel valued and their work appreciated is as important as pointing out things that can make their work better.
2. Create and Maintain a Work-Life Balance
You should probably start to evaluate your life before to commit to more responsibilities. Ask yourself these things –
- Am I have three proper meals?
- Am I getting enough sleep?
- Am I doing things that I love?
- Is there something I wish I had more time for?
- Am I spending enough time with my loved ones?
- Do I have a life other than my work?
If the answer to any of these things is “No,” then you might want to cut back on the hours you spend working or learn to manage time better. Having a healthy work-life balance or work-life integration is really important to succeed truly.
Having a better personal life and not a good professional life will eventually affect your personal life as well. Having a great work-life and no personal life will start mentally draining you. Having a balance is really important to set yourself up for success.
3. Make “Never Giving Up” Your Mantra
When nothing seems to be going in our favor, it is easy to just give up. But, for moving forward in life, this attitude just doesn’t cut it. I know, it is easier to blame the situation, the whatever, than to keep going. There will always be thousands of reasons to give up, but what matters is that one reason to not – which is moving forward in life!
When you take up new challenges, it is always going to seem difficult at the start. It might not even be that difficult in real life, but it something different and unfamiliar, and those facts are enough to scare us and make us start doubting ourselves.
Look at any issues that crop up like a bend in the road rather than a dead end. Giving up on your dreams means giving up on everything you have worked on up until that point. It is as good as giving up on yourself. When you give up on yourself, who do you think is going to take a chance on you?
4. Don’t Let Others Dull Your Shine
We often care a lot about what others think about our business when it is none of their business. People who have time to talk about others anyway are the kind you should not be associating with. People who are working on their own goals do not have the time to care about what other people are doing, let alone pass comments about it.
“Let your light shine today, and let your personality blossom, too. You don’t have to be a people-pleaser, just a people-lover.”
– Beth Moore
When you try something big or something different, people will generally have a negative attitude toward it. We often try to deviate from anything that isn’t familiar or risky, and this attitude carries when looking at others. You do not need people doubting you when you yourself are unsure about where you are going to end up.
People are going to talk; there’s nothing you can do about it. And honestly, answering them or even acknowledging their comments achieves nothing. Ignoring what other people have to say about your plans or dreams is one of the smartest moves you can make.
5. Follow Your Passion
When you follow your passion, all the things I talked about earlier become easier. Because whatever you are doing is something that every fiber of your being is invested in, so it becomes easier to invest everything in the success of the said plan.
When you take time to analyze the situation, you can tap into the best version of yourself, and it becomes easier to find an answer that you have been searching for. You can do what you like the most – going for walks, doing yoga, meditation, etc. If you have many voices in your head that tell you what to do, slowing down will help you listen to yourself.
So, slowing down is always the first step when you feel clueless or overwhelmed. Having many little hobbies can feel overwhelming at first, but it’s one of the best ways to find what you love most and do what you really want to do. Start doing lots of things – new hobbies, new interests, etc. It’s always better to try something new than to have no options at all.
Whenever you enter new phases in life, it is important to close the last chapter on a positive note and carry on with as many lessons as possible. Moving forward has to be proportional to increasing your skillset and value.
There’s no point in having an empty title and learn nothing new because it won’t help you much moving forward. Find yourself, find your purpose, and try to balance things out.
7 Reasons to Leave Your Comfort Zone
Everyone is afraid of leaving their comfort zone because your comfort zone is more comfortable, right? What we don’t realize is that we learn things when we find courage enough to step out of our comfort zones.
“The hardest thing to do is leaving your comfort zone. But you have to let go of the life you’re familiar with and take the risk to live the life you dream about.”
When you dream of something big, you will often have to do things that make you uncomfortable, that scare you. It doesn’t mean that those things are bad, chances are that they won’t be as difficult as you think. Some level of fear and anxiety is important for us to keep moving forward, to make progress, doing things that take us out of our comfort zone is a way to have those feelings propelling us forwards.
If things haven’t been working for you up until now, then you have nothing to lose by trying something new because to achieve something new, you have to do something that you have never done before. Take the first step, dip your toe in the sea, if you still feel scared out of your minds then you can always return to your safe space.
As long as you keep trying to get out there, you are good to go. Here are some reasons to take the plunge.
“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”
-Neale Donald Walsch
1. You Won’t Regret Missing Out on a Potential Opportunity
When you refuse to leave your comfort zone, there will be a lot of things you can miss. You cannot keep doing the same things you do right now and expect to achieve bigger dreams. If you have a big vision, then you will have to constantly be stepping out of your comfort zone.
Being a little uncomfortable means you are going to be learning a few new things. For example, if you have always been scared of public speaking then putting your ideas out there in meetings and presentations will be difficult. You will have to step out of your comfort zone, be a little uncomfortable, deal with a bit of anxiety, but eventually, you will be comfortable enough to speak up among people who hold power.
2. It Will Help Boost Your Confidence
When you get out of your comfort zone, you will learn new things, you will get new experiences, and eventually, you will put a new skill to your name. Having a new skill will boost your confidence because now you aren’t scared of doing something like you earlier were.
For the same example as above, now that you have learned to step out there and speak up, it will give you the confidence to put out your ideas and views in front of people and you will eventually get to take on bigger projects.
3. You Will Feel Self-Fulfilled
People who are stuck in their comfort zones often have a weight of the feeling of underachievement over whatever work they do. The regret that they couldn’t do something because it made them uncomfortable makes them feel that they are not quite living their life to the fullest.
When you step out of your comfort zone, you grow, find the momentum to move forward, find a better level of productivity – all of these things lead you to a sense of self-fulfillment, this gives you a feeling of satisfaction.
4. You Will Become More Productive
When you learn to be okay with the discomfort that comes in the beginning – when you do something that makes you step out of your comfort zone – you will eventually become more productive.
Getting out there requires you to be more focused, to develop self-confidence, and to believe in yourself – these things push you to do things you never thought were possible. When you learn to make yourself be heard even with the nagging discomfort of speaking in the public, you will eventually increase your productivity because you can get started on whatever it is that you wanted to discuss instead of waiting for someone else to come up with it or you to find someone alone or you to wait to develop enough confidence to broach the subject.
5. You Will Learn People Don’t Care a Lot
One of the reasons that people are scared of doing something is the thought of people judging them. Everyone has a lot on their plates, yes, they might look your way but nobody has the time to keep thinking about you. If they do, then you anyway shouldn’t be caring about their opinion.
You have to convince yourself to not let other people’s opinions sway your decisions. When you start doing things because they are going to help you grow, you will learn that what others say doesn’t hold much weight. You will learn to eliminate fear.
6. You Will Find New Things That You Love
You found your current passion by doing something you didn’t always do. Unless you try new things, you will never find things you enjoy that get your mind whirring. To learn more about ourselves, we need to keep testing our limits.
By stepping out, we are really connecting with our inner selves more. Because the more we go exploring, the more we are going to find out.
7. You Will Start Finding it Easier
As you start putting yourself out there more and more, it will start getting easier. You gain self-confidence and eliminate fear by venturing out of your comfort zone and these things that help you grow as a person will make the process easier.
The next time you have to do something uncomfortable to achieve something, it won’t be as difficult as the first time because now you know that the sense of achievement that follows the fear is totally worth doing it.
“The biggest rewards in life are found outside your comfort zone. Live with it. Fear and risk are prerequisites if you want to enjoy a life of success and adventure.”
The best things in life often happen just out of your comfort zone. It’s ok to be scared of new things. Being scared means you’re about to do something really brave and new, which will give you a new experience and will teach you a thing or two.
If you want to change, your life to change, then you have to be willing to be uncomfortable because by leaving your comfort zone behind, by taking a leap of faith, by risking something – you will find out who you are truly capable of. Unless you face something difficult, you will never know your truest potential.
Why Chasing Perfection is a Futile Activity
“Perfection is attained by slow degrees; it requires the hand of time.”
Perfection takes time. Time is something that most of us scared to invest. You either invest your time or you elude it trying to save it. From the time we start understanding words and achievements, we are inspired to chase perfection. By the time you realize that there is no such thing as ‘perfection’ in this world, you have already wasted a lot of your learning years chasing it.
While looking for a perfect job, a perfect career, a perfect relationship, a perfect moment – we often forget to cherish the things we have or be thankful the opportunities we have been given – we end up losing what we have.
“When you aim for perfection, you discover it’s a moving target.”
We keep on running after an adjective that is very hard to put onto things. Perfection is going to have a different meaning for different people. Something that isn’t perfect for you is going to be perfect for someone else.
The pursuit of perfection in every aspect of your life can be very exhausting, you will be going through every stage with a looming dread of not being perfect. Even when you have done a great job, you won’t be satisfied because it does not meet your idea of perfection.
In an attempt to achieve perfection, we have laden ourselves with copious amounts of pressure for every big or little thing we do. It sort of takes out the fun from things when you are constantly striving to make it exceptionally perfect.
“Perfection is finally attained not when there is no longer anything to add but when there is no longer anything to take away when a body has been stripped down to its nakedness.”
-Antoine De Saint-Exupry
We often chase perfection so that we can stand tall in front of society. The opinions of other people affect a lot of people and that is usually the driving force. We want to prove ourselves to others – it can be someone who said we can’t do this or it can be someone we want to be proud of ourselves. What we don’t realize is that everyone is struggling to do their bit. Everyone is under the pressure of being perfect, the irony being, none of us are.
Low self-esteem and self-doubt is usually the cause of us trying to be ‘perfect’ at everything, we do this to improve our self-esteem. Self-doubt also stems from constantly comparing ourselves with others. Many people suffer from imposter syndrome. We don’t understand how that can be detrimental to the work we do. Not feeling good enough, feeling like a fraud, feeling like you don’t deserve anything can really suck the life out of you. These are the mental roadblocks that stop you from doing your best while keeping you constantly worried about chasing a state that is not that tangible – ‘perfection.’
In the years you spend chasing it, there will come a moment of clarity that will help you realize that the pursuit is futile. When you realize that you no longer have to run after being perfect – when you understand that being good enough is actually enough – that is when you feel contentment in life.
Being content is the first step of feeling satisfied with your life and with your efforts. It is a liberating feeling to finally be happy with yourself after years of beating yourself up.
“To accomplish the perfect perfection, a little imperfection helps.”
There are a lot of advantages to not chasing perfection. You start feeling more happiness and gratitude in the light of appreciating the things around you and yourself. This results in you developing an optimistic approach toward life. When you are chasing perfection, it is somehow lost. You start finding faults in all your achievements, stopping yourself from being happy about them. This leads to negativity clouding your thoughts and as a result, you start pouring the same negativity in your life.
When you let go of the notion of perfection, you allow yourself to relax and be proud of your achievements. This action triggers positive emotions within you, helping you become optimistic toward the next stage of your life. This then leads to you feeling more confident. Being confident about your abilities also stops you from running after perfection and makes you realize the worth in what you do.
Striving for perfection is a good thing because then it will make you work harder to get better day by day. With time, every skill gets better. Chasing perfection, on the other hand, is dangerous to the learning process. You need to learn the difference so that you don’t end up harming yourself in the long run.
Instead of chasing perfection, remember to strive for improvement and excellence. When you focus on becoming better than you were yesterday, you automatically open doors for yourself. You surround yourself with positivity – inside and out – making it a much-needed fuel to keep working toward your goal.
Always believe in what you can achieve no matter how imperfect you feel. There are going to be days when you don’t feel good enough. Everyone feels like that once in a while – trust me we all feel the same as humans.
When you let go of that perfection ideology, you free yourself from your own expectations tying you down. You start feeling content with your life and with the pace you are going. That is what will help you sail by, that is what will hold you aboard.
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