“The focus is what is right before you – to give it your best. It sows the seeds of tomorrow.” Kiran Bedit
How focused are you? On what do you focus most days? How do you stay focused in order to complete what you started?
(Thanks to Eleanore for suggesting today’s topic and to Joanne for seconding it as relevant. Next week I need a word starting with “G” so please leave me some words in Comment at the end of the post. If you don’t want me to use your name if I choose your word as the topic, please just write “no name” after your suggestion. Thanks for participating in this venture.)
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Oh, my gosh! That beautiful bluebird just landed in the shrubbery outside the window. I can’t decide if that’s my favorite or the red-winged blackbird I saw at the lake?
Isn’t that cute! The little girl from the next block has a new pink helmet – she needs to be careful riding her little bike so fast.
Oh, gee! I forgot to put out some protein to defrost for supper.
Now where was I going with this blog?
Can anyone relate to this? I know it would be smart of me not to have my desk facing a front window, but on the other hand, the beauty of my neighborhood often inspires me. What’s a gal to do? Clearly, I need to focus on the task at hand.
How To Use Our Time
Do you ever experience this challenge? With the pandemic, some people have more time on their hands than they like, so the question is how it is best to use it. With others of us, the day is already too full of things that have to be done and we have to prioritize.
Wednesdays are the day I focus on writing this blog post, but the other days are not so focused. Over the years, I’ve learned that the best way for me to get things done is to make a list each day of what I need to do. As I complete each activity, I check it off the list. At the end of the day, if I’ve completed them all, I throw away the list and tell myself – “well-done!” If anything is still on the list, it is moved to the next day.
The Value of Long Term Lists
I also have a list that is not attached to a completion date. These are items that need to be done in the next few days or week, and I can fit them into my schedule whenever it’s convenient. While I can probably remember the things I need to do on a certain day without a list, other items can easily slip out of mind for days. When I have completed the daily chores, the list reminds me of other productive ways to use my time.
A list doesn’t have to contain only work we need to do. It may also remind us of social events as well. Now that so much socializing takes place on Zoom, I place events on my calendar so I won’t forget when one is to occur. I don’t attend them all, but this helps me remember options, so I can choose what I’m in the mood for that day.
Present Choices Affect the Future
Much of what we do today prepares us for tomorrow. A champion baseball player didn’t become great over night; neither did a ballet dancer with the New York Ballet Company. Becoming a doctor takes years, and getting a teaching certificate requires a college degree.
Especially as we age, how we focus on taking care of ourselves determines how active and healthy we can be for the present and the future. We may have more restrictions in our diet, trying to avoid or maintain a low level of diabetes or other disease. We may need to follow an exercise program to avoid back problems or just to keep us strong enough to go hiking. Caring for ourselves requires doing the best we can right now, by focusing.
To meet any long-term goal, we have to focus on the moment and stay on track. That requires commitment, discipline, and the willingness to avoid tantalizing distractions. (Darn, there’s that blue bird again!) What we do right now affects tomorrow.
It is probably a good thing I was at the lake yesterday watching the birds or I would be even more distracted today. However, writing is also a major pleasure for me and creating this post is the goal I focus on right now.
What’s on your list for today?
© 2021 Georganne Spruce