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Focus and Attention

Find the red shirt in this photo. Now find another red shirt. Find another. Another red shirt. The more you look for, the more you see, right. Now cover the picture with your hand ….

Go ahead….and tell me how many blue shirts are in the picture.

It’s not as easy. You were focused on the red shirts. Your mind found what you asked it to find and zoomed right in on that to the exclusion of other points of focus.

  • Motorcycle riders are taught to look where you want the bike to go. Do NOT focus on the pot hole or drop off at the edge of the road. Focus on that pot hole… you WILL hit the pothole.
  • Baseball players keep their eye – their focus – on the ball and VISUALIZE the swing and hit into the stands for a home run.
  • Martial artists see the striking hand traveling through the board before they even release their punch.

Focus. Visualization. What you see happen becomes reality as you work through the process to make it reality.

Now, imagine a telephone call from a voice you know well:

“Hi! I heard you give that talk at work today. I can’t believe how many times you stuttered your words! Didn’t you even prepare? You read the report over and over but still you couldn’t even remember the main points. How stupid are you? Everyone was staring you know. They all saw you sweating and shaking. They probably think you are a loser and should be fired. Maybe you should just quit before the boss has that chance. Not like you are going anywhere anyway. Well, I have to go now, Bye!” 

Who was that?! Was it your best friend? The guy in the elevator after the meeting? No. It was you. That was that voice in your head that focusses on every negative thing you do. Every weak moment, every minor failure. It’s the same voice that called you before the meeting and said this:

“Hey, there! Don’t forget you have that meeting with ALL the bosses today! You know you’ll probably be late, you always are. I hope you wore deodorant, you know you sweat like a pig. Gawd, I hope you don’t forget every word AGAIN. You are so embarrassing when you do that. Ok, I’ll see you at the meeting. I’ll sit in back so I can get out early when you screw up.” 

If ANYONE else spoke to you like that, would you stay friends?! Seriously, would you ever pick up the phone again?

No. you wouldn’t let anyone else treat you that way, but that’s how you treat yourself. Stop It. 0

“I’m sorry.” NO. you are NOT sorry. You might apologize but you are NOT a sorry person.

“I’m such a klutz.” No. you are not a klutz. You may be tired, distracted, wearing uncomfortable shoes, unsure of the pavement, but YOU are great.

“I never remember things” That’s simply not true. You remember thousands of things a day and in the course of a day you might need a trigger to remember one or two things that are unfamiliar. You are smart enough to trust those things to a list so that you are successful.

How are we focusing our attention in our daily exercises and journal?

Let’s take a look at how we document our projects and goals. Are you using words that focus on success? Are you envisioning the project successfully completed?

FINALIZE the Smith report. 

COORDINATE  the merger tasks for the Levinson deal.

FINISH building the bookcase for Susan.

See yourself successful! Create a mental and physical image of yourself successfully completing that project. Use every possible sense to make that image real.

  • SEE what the finished result looks like and how YOU will look taking pride in it.
  • HEAR the words of praise from those around you.
  • FEEL the emotion of satisfaction in a job well done.
  • TASTE the celebratory meal you share with others who are happy to see the project completed well.
  • SMELL the steak grilling for the celebratory meal or the varnish drying on the beautiful bookcase or the ink drying on the finished report paper.

Advertisers do this every single day to CAPTURE your attention, convince you that you have a NEED for their product, a need so great you will COMMIT your resources to have that product and they SHOW you how happy you will be owning their product. Aren’t you worth the same advertising efforts?





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