I watched 2 NASCAR races this weekend — the Sprint Cup race and the Canadian NASCAR race. To get to that level of performance (rising above the years of amateur Saturday night racing) takes focus. And then to rocket around a track for a couple of hours while driving a couple hundred miles an hour, inches from another car, takes a ton of focus.
Focus, discipline, determination, willpower. These are topics that fascinate me. I think what interests me is that many of us can focus on some things so naturally, happily spend hours on that activity. But try to focus on a difficult but necessary task? Yikes! Suddenly minutes seem like hours and we remember that we need to dig out the vacuum cleaner from under the stairs and vacuum every room in the house.
So I’m always reading about focus (and its synonyms), trying to hack my own ability to do more in the limited time I have available. Here are some of the focus-related articles I’ve read lately:
- How to focus. Leo Babauta’s article is a good start to read about focusing (which is why I listed it on my 30 days of focus essential reading list about 8 months ago). It lists some good best practices to get started. This post is really about staying focused on a particular task instead of getting distracted or procrastinating. And while you’re on ZenHabits, why download the free ZenHabits Focus book. It’s a good read.
- 10 ways to use laser-sharp focus to get more done. The link above is Babauta’s post about focusing through specific tasks. This article, also at ZenHabits, seems to be more about focusing for the long-term — like through your day or through a major project. In my opinion, it’s a related but slightly different skillset.
- How to do things that matter most. Although this article isn’t explicitly about focusing, it addresses the topic implicitly, urging readers to make changes in their life that will allow them to focus… and to focus on the right things.
- How to focus is Scott H. Young’s more advanced take on focusing. He spends a bit more time talking about the need to focus and the benefit, and outlines how to focus more effectively. Also, be sure to read another blog post — Self-discipline comes first; another great read.
- And, if you’re interested in reading some of my earlier writing on focus, check out this post: Tiger Woods’ trick to improve focus during his game. It’s a trick originally taught to golfers but in my blog post I’ll show you how it can apply to your business as well.