Distractions abound in all areas of life. Every day we are bombarded with ideas:
- Things that we must do.
- Things that we could do.
- Things that we want to do.
- Things that we really ought to do.
- Things that we have to do whether we want to or not.
- Things that we would be happy to do if we could only find the time.
How do we sort through it all?
Having worked through the first three tips for beginners, we’re already familiar with the idea that we each have a unique purpose, right? Well, it is precisely this unique purpose that will help us to stay focused.
Somewhere deep down inside, most of us already have an inkling of what God designed us to do. So let’s go do it. It really is that simple.
The trouble is, we are humans, and humans tend to complicate things unnecessarily. We set out to fulfill our respective missions and are immediately pelted with a hailstorm of other things that we could do. Alas, there are only 24 hours in a day, and we have to use some of them to sleep. Obviously, then, we just can’t do everything. We’ll have to focus on something.
Please do not misunderstand the meaning of the word “focus.” It has nothing to do with being a one-dimensional person. Most of us have more than one area of responsibility, as well as a number of interesting things we do on the side that we certainly don’t want to give up.
For everything there is a season.
However, hard-wired into the back of the minds of each one of us is a rough idea of the specific missions we were designed to carry out. That’s what we need to go do.
Tips for Staying Focused
Some people find it helpful to write down their visions, values, goals, and/or mission statements. Those of us who feel we can benefit from this exercise should by all means do so. It will remind us to stay focused and will make recognizing distractions much easier.
As we clarify our purpose, we can consider questions like these:
- If someone were to ask us why we are pursuing a country lifestyle, what would we tell them?
- What is our mission?
- Who are we trying to serve?
- What are their needs?
- How can we meet those needs?
- How can we balance serving others with family time?
- When can we give ourselves a little leisure to pursue other activities that we feel are important?
This exercise can help us sort through the distractions and remember what it is we were supposed to do in the first place. How much or how little to write down, however, is a question each one of us will answer a bit differently. Some of us just need a list of broad priorities, while others do better with a specific checklist of goals. We may need to experiment a little until we find an approach that works for us.
Just remember that the writing assignment isn’t the ultimate goal, but rather a tool to help us reach the goal. We could write mission statements until our hands got tired and still be distracted—by mission statements!
Time to Act
Once we’ve written down what we need to help us stay focused, it’s time to move on. Of course, we can always refer back to our written priorities or goals, but we must not allow them to become yet another distraction. Vision is pointless without action.
Life is short. Let’s get busy!
Building a Sustainable Business
Task Three of this outstanding free eBook walks you through the process of developing a vision, writing a mission statement, and setting goals. Includes helpful worksheets.