How To Get Over It And Focus On What Matters Most
Originally published on Thrive Global on August 18, 2017
Do you sometimes feel stuck in the deepest rut of all time? You have no energy, no focus and it’s really hard to get motivated? IThis is what procrastination feels like and it can really impact on your performance and achievement.
You’re trying to move forward, but you can’t see the wood for the trees, whether it’s that never ending to-do list or just a lack of clarity on what to focus on next. Sound familiar?
It happens to most entrepreneurs and business leaders at some point. Sometimes it’s an occasional feeling but for others it feels never ending with no light at the end of the tunnel.
I’ve found the best way to get yourself out of this position is to reflect on and understand the reason you’re there in the first place. There are many reasons people get stuck along the way but here are the 5 big ones that come up again and again in my coaching work.
1: You’re not clear about your goals.
Goals that lack total commitment, the courage needed to achieve them and clarity of focus simply become mere wishes. I hear goals such as “I’d like to build a seven figure business” or “I want to be earning £30,000 per month”. Well, wouldn’t we all.
It’s far better to commit to achieving ambitious but realistic goals in a specific time frame with tangible ways to reach it. This gives you something that excites you, motivates you and has a clear path and direction for achieving the goals.
Sometimes it’s beneficial to start small to build up momentum and gain confidence. If you’re not clear on your target audience a goal could be “Identify my target audience and write my sales copy in the next month” or “Increase my sales by 10% in the next three months by speaking to at least five new prospects every day”
These are specific goals with tangible outcomes. We all know that if we don’t have a clear destination in mind, how do we know when we reach it, and how do we keep building momentum every day.
2: You’re not clear on your purpose and haven’t identified your why.
Motivation and confidence matter. There are plenty of ways out there to increase your productivity, but unless you are emotionally connected to the why of what you’re doing it’s pretty easy to fall off the productivity wagon.
So, when you get stuck, step back, reflect and ask yourself, “Why am I doing what I’m doing?” and “Why do I want to reach this goal again?”
Think about how you are feeling now and how you want to feel. Find your reasons for doing what you’re doing. Is it about more freedom, having more time to do the things you love, a better work-life balance, making a real difference, making more money, having a sense of accomplishment?
Whatever your key motivations and desires are, when you find yourself dragging your feet, stop to remind yourself why you wanted to do this in the first place. Reconnecting with and reflecting on your why will always help.
3: You haven’t broken down the work into bite-size pieces.
Goals are big things that are going to take a lot of energy and effort over time to accomplish. If you don’t have an end in mind or the goal feels so far out of reach then you can often get stuck.
Instead focus on the steps you need to take and give yourself a pat on the back for accomplishing every step. Sometimes step by step is the best way to stay focused, energised and motivated.
Sometimes, we all need that extra bit of courage to take that next step towards achieving our goals and cutting the work into specific outcomes and smaller pieces can be hugely beneficial.
4: You are becoming distracted by too many tasks
If left unchecked, the whirlwind of busyness, multi-tasking and ‘bad work’ will constantly distract you from reaching your goals. The best thing to do is focus on the high value activities that will make a difference and simplify.
Raise your ambitions but focus only on the things that will really move the needle. The starting point is to look at everything you currently do. What can be cut, automated, delegated and outsourced? What 3 or 4 things do you want to focus on that will make a huge difference?
I coach that you should only have a maximum of five main objectives per day. You focus on those five, starting with the most important, and work on those until complete. If you deviate you lose focus and time.
Start the morning with some “Me Time’ to get you set up for the day and have a clear focus on what you’re going to work on.
5: You don’t have any true accountability
For many entrepreneurs working alone, true accountability is hard to achieve. You have so many things you think you should do, or people have suggested you should do, which makes it easy to down rabbit holes that take you further away from your goals.
Having someone to hold you accountable, cheer you on, motivate you and inspire you is key to goal success. It’s beneficial to have someone as an accountability partner, whether it be a coach, mentor or close friend, who will hold you accountable without succumbing to your excuses.
Their purpose is to give you clarity and focus on the road you’re travelling on, to keep you energised and ensure you get over the finish line.
About the Author
Mark Pettit works with ambitious and growth focused entrepreneurs who want to achieve new heights of performance, success and happiness.
He works with entrepreneurs to multiply their performance, mindset, confidence, results, success, happiness, and personal freedom with unique and effective coaching, strategies, systems and tools.