Sometimes I get so many ideas that I can’t focus on just one. I get really inspired and feel myself being pulled in a hundred different directions.
I start new journals, come up with new blog ideas, buy new art supplies, sign up for new courses… only to find those initial feelings of inspiration giving way to feelings of overwhelm.
When I finally get a moment to myself to spend doing my own thing, I feel paralysed by indecision. Do I finally start writing the novel I’ve been planning? Or do I break out my new stencils? Or maybe I should be planning the e-book for my new blog? Or art journaling in one of my many art journals? Or journaling in my written journal? Or blogging on this blog? Or, or or…
It all becomes a bit much.
As much as I love feeling inspired and creative, I find myself with 15 different projects that are unfinished, abandoned for the next thing. This is no way to make progress!
In her book Renaissance Souls, Margaret Lobenstine explores people like me – what she calls, ‘people who have too many passions to pick just one’. I am so one of these people! I quickly move from one thing to the next, easily bored and distracted by something new that’s caught my eye.
The thing is, I would really like to finish something that I start. I want to finish writing my novel. I want to develop a blog to the point that it’s financially successful (which is not likely to happen if I keep getting distracted by coming up with ideas for new blogs).
In other words, I want to focus my attention and get results on the few things that are really important to me.
Lobenstine suggests picking three or four ‘focal points’ – these are the areas of interest that you choose to focus your attention. I think this is especially helpful advice for someone like me who, without limits, could easily have 10-15 different projects on the go at once. Four sounds good. Four sounds like I will actually have time and energy to focus and achieve something!
So right now I’m working on eliminating distractions and choosing the areas that are most important for my attention.
Journaling is an extremely helpful tool to remind ourselves of what is important, what we most want to focus on. It can also be a good way to remind ourselves by reading back through past entries. I’ve found that while sometimes my priorities have changed, often I’ve just gotten distracted and not followed through on what really mattered to me.
How do you remain focused on the things that are important to you?