Oh my, everyone tells you to focus. You try to focus, but what is that 5 letter word, focus? What does it mean, and how do you set your mind to focus yet not be so narrow-minded that you miss out on opportunities?
There are so many things coming at you. Technology is moving so fast, and there is always something to distract you.
But on the other hand, if all you do is focus on one thing, you may miss opportunities. Like when your imagination takes you to faraway lands. You don’t want to be so focused that you miss the moments in your life for new horizons.
Today let’s talk about how to focus and allow room for growth.
I put together this little story to help you understand what I am talking about here.
Little Story On Set Your Mind To Focus
You built this beautiful boat. You take it out into the deep ocean to see what lies ahead of you. The sights are majestic. It takes your breath away. You just sit there and take in the scenery. You are floating along when you realize you are off the course. Your compass is not working.
You just spent time enjoying yourself instead of focusing on the task at hand, which was checking out your new boat.
What will you do? If you panic, you will miss the majestic scenery. If you only pay attention to your surroundings, you will not find your way. As you begin to formulate a plan, you look ahead. In the distance, there is an opening in the rocks. It is a bit exciting but also quite scary. Where does that opening lead to? What is beyond what your mind can see?
Life is like this. You begin slow and know exactly where you will be going. You choose a career and begin to pursue it. Then you realize there are things up ahead that you can not see. Events happen that take you off course.
If you focus only on life and your career, you may miss the opportunities ahead. Life will take you in different directions. Even in the career you have chosen, your path can veer off course.
What exactly is focus. The definition in the dictionary says:
- The center of interest or activity.
- The state or quality of having or producing clear visual definition.
So you have a career that is the center of your activity. It is your life. And in that career, you want to have a clear vision of where you will go.
There is nothing wrong with a clear vision or working toward a strong goal. Let’s move forward to help get a better understanding of focus in this situation.
What Is Your Focus?
Do you want to advance or move up in the company? Do you want to extend your education? Whatever your clear vision is, you have to set your sites ahead.
But let’s say you are so focused on your goal that all you do is work toward it. You set goals for each day, and these short-term goals move you toward a long-term goal.
Keep An Open Mind
There are times in life when you have to follow a different path. It may not have been in your original focus. If you are so focused and only set on one way, you may miss an opportunity put in your path.
Let’s say you are a nurse like I am. And you want to continue your education, so you are only focused on doing what will get you to your end goal. You take jobs that will only advance you. You focus on only the things that will lead to your long-term goal.
But an opportunity comes along for you. You are offered a job that will help you learn a different path in nursing. But you can’t see around your goal. Your mind is not open to new opportunities. So you turn down that job.
In the long run, that job would have prepared you to become a better nurse, and it offered education reimbursement. You missed that opportunity because your mind was closed to only focus on what you already set in motion.
It’s like a boat on the ocean. You are in the boat with your career. You are focused on your plan ahead. But something amazing comes along. Will you keep your eyes closed to the beauty ahead, or will you go off course to enjoy a new experience?
Now that’s a tough question. Because if you don’t focus on what’s ahead, you may not reach your goal. But if you don’t enjoy the new experience, you will miss out on life.
There is no cut and dried way to focus and stay flexible. But to do both, you have to keep an open mind. It takes discipline to do both.
Discipline to stay on course and to look at your surroundings at the same time. You plan to continue your education or to move up in the company. But if a new and better opportunity comes along, it is important to take your path to new heights.
So to sum this all up. To focus is good. It is good to have a clear picture and to write down your goals. It is good not to allow technology and your world’s cares to take you away from where you want to go.
But when that focus is so narrow that you miss new experiences and opportunities, your focus is too rigid. Your life has lost its flexibility and flare.
Keep an open mind. Enjoy life on your way through it. Keep your eyes open to the scenery around you or, rather, to new opportunities and experiences.