Over the past 10 years I have helped over 800 business owners catch the break in their business that it needed to thrive and grow to be successful. It seems like just yesterday I was still at my desk in Blue Field elementary teaching kindergarteners.
Woo! One of my favorite topics of all time. Let’s start with the real issues at hand, and then we’ll get into some of the things that you can do to help re-route yourself.
Please note: some of the things I say may hit home and I hope you take these things to heart and are open minded in resolving and sitting with the truth. Please also note if you try and book a strategy call in 2024 and I’m booked out, don’t be mad or sad- just email me because I only offer these types of calls sporadically throughout the year (the link to see the calendar is HERE).
The important thing to remember is you have the power to make massive shifts in your life and it doesn’t have to be difficult or take forever. You can get focused. You can avoid and even eradicate certain distractions that tend to derail you and you CAN be successful.
When someone asks me “Whitney, I can’t seem to focus on my goals” (and we’re not having a conversation specifically about ADHD) my question and responses are usually the following:
How can you focus on your goals? The short answer: get really freakin’ serious and motivated by the goals and the reality of not manifesting it.
Sometimes our goals are easy to ignore because we don’t feel enough intensity or emotion towards it.
Other times our goals are easy to put on the back burner because we are allowing too many cooks to be in the kitchen… or without the kitchen pun: we allow our distractions to take over again and again.
Fun fact: distractions are normal and they are going to happen- especially if you have a cell phone, a job, a pet or family.
No one is going to do the hard or tricky work for you. You have to be able to take ownership of everything and get creative if you have to in order to stay focused.
There is nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to distraction- but we have to take control and ownership of our time, our goals and our lives.
Once you can get pumped about your goals and you understand the ramifications of not getting them done by the time you need to complete them, you can usually reduce distractions a bit because you’ve got an actual target you’re working towards. A big problem I see all the time is folks working towards goals they don’t really care about or working towards goals with no end date in sight.
Goals with no accountability is like chips with no quac or queso.
It seems fine at first, but you quickly realize it’s just not as good and then you later realize there’s no point in having one without the other.
What/Who is keeping you accountable to your goals? This will help to limit distractions for you.
Accountability looks different to different people and you can read more about that throughout my blog and programs and Pinterest pins, etc. but think about this for you & your working style and test out different things if this is an area you feel you need to work on.
If you need accountability support because you are struggling holding yourself accountable (I’ve struggled for years to hold myself accountable, so this is a 100% judgement-free zone), reach out to me for a Walk & Talk Call (here) and we can hash some things out and get some ideas flowing.
Now that you have some kind of accountability, you’re serious af about your goals, there is an end date to when this goal should be completed- one of the last things I recommend when it comes to focusing on the goal is to create rituals and check-ins for yourself as you work.
Check-ins can happen at whatever cadence you’d like from checking in hourly during your work day or checking in every couple of weeks to make sure you’re still on track and in alignment with your goals. Either way- checking in is crucial.
Rituals help in the sense that just like setting the mood for love time or getting pumped up for a workout- it helps to get prepped to sit down (or stand) and work on your [work] goals.
I get coffee usually and some water, my headphones, some focus playlist on Spotify like “Big Desk Energy” and I clear out all my tabs and start fresh with whatever I should be working on. It helps. I also will sometimes time myself with the Pomodoro method if I’m on a crunch and I will sometimes create a crunch (like working in between two video calls I have) so I am forced to focus during that set of time and can move on after an appointed time.
Now, the last thing I’d like to hit on are some quick ways to reduce distractions that work for folks I work with and that work for me. Putting my phone on DND has been a game changer. Limiting auditory distractions (like the sound of my phone or a TV in the background) helps a lot. Turning notifications off for social media helps, as does telling people around me that I need x amount of time to work on something. Often times friends and family will bug you because they have 0 clue what you’re working on or they don’t know that what you’re working on is time sensitive. Let them know.
Having a plan when it comes to when you will lean into the distractions is also helpful. I usually let all of the memes and TikTok videos my friends and family send accrue for a while and when I’ve gotten things done and I’m finished my calls for the day, then I’ll go through and watch them and move on. It keeps me from checking my phone everytime it buzzes just to see the same reel that 3 people sent me on the same day.
I stop checking my emails a million times an hour. I don’t even open email tabs on my computer unless I need something super specific. Turning notifications off for so many things- to include apps that I shop at like Etsy or Target is very helpful. I just don’t need to know that the sale is back on for electronic toothbrushes whilst I’m in this meeting- thanks but no thanks. Turn them off.
Your distractions could be different than mine- it could be a pet you have that is super needy or a coworker who is constantly pinging you on Teams or Slack and you don’t want to seem like you’re ignoring them or slacking off… (there are ways around this like putting DND or blocking your calendar to work on things and putting a Busy status up, etc).
Work around the distractions. Confront them. Communicate with them. Bargain with them if you have to (ex. we’ll go on a walk after I finish this email or call or after I clean xyz).
The intention is to not overwhelm ourselves unecessarily. There is only a certain amount of time in a day and there are only a few things you should be focusing on from a priority standpoint each day.
The moment you start to doing too much is the moment the distractions sneak their way in and start vying for your attention.
You can absolutely do this- you can hit your goals, you can stay the course, you can hit that finish line. It’s just a matter of how bad do you want it and how much are you willing to work through the bs to get it done?
We believe in you over here at whitneydanielle.com and we’re rooting for you no matter what.
Hmu if you need support,
PS- depending on when you see this, check and see if there are any spots open for a goal setting strategy call. They are bomb!!! Link is HERE (spots are limited because we’ve all got a lot goin’ on, yeah?) Get them while they’re hot!!!