The Real World / Advice  / Let’s Focus

Let’s Focus

Sorry, I’ve been MIA. I’m realizing that it’s hard to stick to one thing unless there’s a strict deadline. I’ve also concluded that it can be difficult to focus on what you have to do when there is so much going on around you. Being in college has been a real test because I have work to get done but I also want to maintain a social life; there is limited time and endless stuff to get done. Even staying organized, I find myself always overwhelmed. Over these last few months, I’ve noticed just how important it is to define your priorities. As humans, we can’t focus on too many jobs, people, activities, etc. at once, as focusing on an overload of things can cause us to drain ourselves, put in mediocre effort, or neglect other aspects of our lives. 

I used to think that you needed discipline to be focused but it doesn’t matter how much discipline you have if you are giving yourself too many things to focus on. Instead, it takes focus to be disciplined. To me, this means, you need to know what your priorities are in order to have the capability to get them done (be disciplined). This relates back to the whole idea of “quality over quantity” or “less is more” because when there is less to focus on, more effort can be dedicated to a smaller pool of tasks. But it can also be argued that if you focus on too many things, you’re not disciplined. So I guess I’m realizing that both statements regarding discipline and focus can exist.

I see so many people around me, including myself, who live polarized lives, meaning they’re either all in or all out. For example, it’s either 100% school mode and no fun, or going out 24/7 and socializing while neglecting academics. Without focus, we often feel all over the place; there’s no grounding feeling. I think the first step to getting focused is to ask yourself what you want. For example, I personally need to include some form of exercise in my day in order to be satisfied. So, I will create a schedule that includes a workout daily even if that means I won’t be able to go to a social event that night. 

  • How can one focus when there is so much to do? 
  • How can one focus when one doesn’t know what’s going to happen next in the world? 
  • How can one focus when one is thinking of the next thing on the to-do list? 

A lot of these questions can be answered by the simple task of living in the present. I saw a quote that said, “Worrying won’t take away tomorrow’s troubles; it will only take away today’s peace.” Focusing means giving your attention to one thing in that one moment. Allocate time in your day to decide what you want to focus on.

I’m struggling to focus right now. Especially on Mondays, at the start of the week, I let myself get overwhelmed about what’s to come. And every Friday, I look back and see how productive I was and that there was no need for the stress in the first place. No need for a lack of focus. So I’ll leave you with this: focus on your priorities. Those priorities can change daily, weekly, yearly, ect. But the first step is to be aware of them. So start now. What are your priorities? Focus on those.

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