With the new year right around the corner (can you believe it!?) you’ve probably already heard a bajillion things about resolutions. You might have even set some for yourself, you little planner you – way to be on top of it!
Whether you’ve already set your resolutions or not, this is an important topic on the power of focusing. See, around this time we all get to evaluating our lives and what we’d like to be different and how we’d like to grow over the coming year (an exhausting list if you’re anything like me … better to be ambitious, I suppose). But it’s even a bigger deal this year because it’s a whole new decade! We’re evaluating the last ten years of our lives and figuring out what we want the next ten years to look like.
That’s a 20 year swing (10 back, 10 forward) for everything from our health, wealth, relationships, and more! We’re evaluating and envisioning the possibilities, the options, and opportunities. And while I’m 1,000% on board with this planning the next decade, I wanted to stress the power of focusing on one thing at a time because it can make a HUGE difference for progressing toward your goals.
Remember your smitten mental state when you were dating your husband? It was new and infatuating and you spent every waking hour with each other. You were damn near focused solely on him (I only say ‘damn near’ because I’m sure you remembered to eat and bathe). But your weekly girls night became monthly and the only thing that got you out of the house was him. You were falling head over heels.
And I bet he felt special! He got all your attention, he felt like a million bucks, and (assuming because he’s your husband) he reciprocated all those things and he asked you to marry him (duh, you said yes!). Success! You got the man and the love of your life, and let’s be real, he got the best prize 😉
Then life swoops in and kids and pets and moving and new jobs. And you can’t devote the majority of your focus to that man you love so much. And you both can tell the difference, date nights require scheduling instead of being the norm. When your focus is split in 17 different directions, it feels impossible to experience the little progress that is being made.
Soccer Ball Analogy
I heard it put another way by Rachel Hollis – imagine you have six soccer balls and you only get six kicks a day. First you attempt kicking each ball one time per day. But then you try something new by putting all your kicks (aka focus) on the same ball. See how much farther you can get by focusing all your attention on one ball?
For the purposes of this article, the soccer balls are your resolutions. They represent all those goals you want to accomplish over the next ten years. Can you see now the power of focusing on one at a time?! Going all in on just one until it becomes a part of your lifestyle, so ingrained that it’s habitual and continues on in the background now (without so much focus).
When It Becomes Who You Are
If your resolution is a healthier lifestyle and you go all in, it can take anywhere from a few months to a couple years to figure out your version of a healthy lifestyle. Then it becomes a non-negotiable part of your life – only then are you ready to undertake the next resolution.
James Clear (author of Atomic Habits) recently wrote, “New goals don’t deliver new results. New lifestyles do. And a lifestyle is not an outcome, it is a process. For this reason, all of your energy should go into building better habits, not chasing better results.”
When you get to that point, where your resolution becomes who you are now and it’s habitual, THAT’S when it’s prime time to begin on another. Success in a resolution only breeds further confidence and momentum as you begin tackling another journey of improvement – you already KNOW you can achieve success with your next one.
Too many successful people to cite in this post have written on the power of focus and creating habits, so it’s worth consideration when deciding on your resolutions. Remember the power of focus – figure out THE ONE resolution you’re going to focus on until you’ve achieved the result you want and go all in!
And if you’re in need of increased accountability, email me the one resolution you’re going all in on and I’ll check in periodically to keep you motivated!