Focus is one main factor that makes a man achieve his dream. Without it, every goal that is set ends up theoretical. Each year, many goals actually end up not being achieved because the distance between goal setting and attainment is a bit wide. Some people never walk on the road towards their goals at all; they just set it and leave it where it was born, and then come back years later to make excuses why they couldn’t get to the finish line. I am not in anyway suggesting that it is so easy to achieve a goal, neither am I saying that it is so difficult not to. Anyone who has the drive and desire can make it to the end of their goals where they get the right results, but those who procrastinate or are lazy, may never ever reach their expectation as far as their goals are concerned.
Let me take you through, step by step, the way I achieve my goals. I decided to take you through this route because that is what I practically do. These steps have helped me write a number of books, and to keep going without giving up, in spite of the obstacles I always come across.
To keep your focus on your goal:
1. You must first determine what you want: Believe me; many people don’t know what they want. Whatever appeals to their eyes, they go for. Before going halfway down that goal, if they see someone else succeed in another area, they quickly abandon their current goal, and start afresh with their new appeal. With this kind of attitude, they can never be focused. Focus begins with conviction; having a made up mind on what you actually want to achieve. Your determination on what you want is what gives you direction.
2. You must choose your lane: Deciding what you want is great because it helps you determine your direction, but you must realise that a direction may contain many lanes; and you can’t run on all the lanes. Athletes run in the same direction but mostly on different lanes, otherwise, they’ll be disqualified. In the same vein, some people get themselves disqualified from their goals because they ran on the lane not meant for their goals. To keep your focus, determine the lane that is suitable for your goal. If for instance, your goal is to become an Accountant, education is the right direction, but going to study Geography isn’t your lane.
3. Work on your strength/manage your weakness: When you work on your strength, you become better. Remember, I didn’t say, ‘strengthen your weakness’ because most weaknesses are not easy to strengthen. Where you can’t strengthen your weakness, you must learn to manage it. The strength of a footballer that is a striker may be on his left foot, but when the ball goes right, he may find it difficult to kick. The best way for this person to manage his weakness is to quickly put the ball in the position of his left leg before kicking. In all goal settings, it is better to maximise your strength so that you can achieve your expectation.
4. Choose your team: Even in a single person sport, there are teams; coach, manager, physiotherapist, etc. To focus on your goal, you need those who are in the same direction and lane. Most times, you can’t see alone and achieve alone. Those in your team may see farther than you, so let them instruct you. There is no true focus without good instructions.
5. Decide how far you want to go: The sky is the limit but how many people truly reach the sky? I am currently writing a book, and within my mind, I have decided how many pages it will be. I am doing all I can to fit my information into that number of pages; that is how far I want to go.
If your goal is infinite, you won’t achieve any goal. A goal must have a definitive end for it to make sense. If footballers are told to keep playing without knowing when the game will end, many, if not all, will walk out of the pitch after the normal time. A goal must have a beginning and an end for it to be meaningful.
6. Get moving: One issue that gets me frustrated with certain people is setting goals but never running with it. It is easy to identify those who run with their goals because you can see how much they’ve achieved after a period of time. If after some time, you’re still where you began, you aren’t actually running.
7. Deal with the days of deflation: Many times, I have asked myself why I do what I do. Many times, I have told myself that I am wasting my life trying to inspire people. Very many times, I have been discouraged not to continue in this direction, especially when I feel that life isn’t rewarding me as much as I am giving. These and many other reasons have justified my quest to give up, but despite these deflating moments, I have made up my mind to focus on my dream and purpose in life; to motivate people. Those who have deflated me most are those who know me most, but the more they deflate me, the more I pump myself up to keep going. As you focus on your goal, there will be many moments of deflation. Don’t start leaking when they attempt to deflate you; keep pumping yourself up, otherwise, you will lose focus.
8. Refuse distraction and attraction: In a previous article, I said that distraction and attraction have the same objective; to take your eyes off your goal. In a stadium, the opposing fans distract you, but your own fans attract you. When the opposing fans boo and jeer, they are distracting. If you listen to them, you will keep missing the point. On the other hand, you tend to entertain more when your fans are cheering you, but you aren’t there to entertain; you are there to score goals. Because of attraction, some teams lose their matches. Don’t miss your goal because of those on your side. Never play to the gallery; score the goals.
9. Fix your eyes on your destination: Let your attention be where the reward is. The reward is in winning. Keep your focus until you win.
10. Be absolutely dogged: Like Arsenal Football Club, it is good to play fanciful football, but it is only the dogged that wins the match. As you focus, there will be hard barriers coming against you. You need to be dogged. It is only the dogged that emerges. It is only the dogged that wins. It is only the dogged that comes out the champion. Be a champion. Be a winner. You can if you’re determined!