A common piece of advice shared among leaders is, “Stay focused.”
It’s short, snappy, encouraging, and applies to almost every leadership situation. It works for staying focused on the overarching goal of your business and for staying on top of the day-to-day tasks.
But what do we actually mean when we tell someone to, “Stay focused?”
Being able to maintain our focus indicates that we can direct our attention and our awareness. We are able to place our attention in one place and then keep it there. Like a zoom lens on a camera, it zeros in and pulls everything into greater clarity.
This is typically how we think of focus; intentional and unwavering.
But with tunnel vision comes blind spots; while we are engrossed in one area, life is continuing around us, unnoticed.
Perhaps it’s better not to focus quite so much, but rather to zoom in and out as needed.
Let’s go back to the lens metaphor. If I use a panoramic lens, I can survey the landscape and bring focus to more of what is occurring around me. In the world of business and leadership, this means that I will be more aware of shifts in the industry and the shifts that are needed in my company.
We also need to consider the consequences of what we choose to put our attention on, as this is what ultimately creates our experience.
If we choose to put our attention on the latest and greatest thing that pops up, we will lose sight of what we already have. Or if we choose to focus on everything that isn’t going well, we will begin to feel like a complete failure.
So what do we do? How are we to know where to direct our attention?
You should put your attention on where you feel the most alive and in the best flow.
Using your zoom and panoramic lens combined with your ability to notice when you feel the most alive will give you just the right amount of focus for just the right amount of time.