Pay Attention

What would your life be like if you were able to focus your attention on three priorities for a week? What if you were able to concentrate, focus and actually complete those activities, in spite of the usual distractions?

“In the final analysis, the quality of our life depends on our ability to consciously choose who and what we give our thoughts, interests moments and emotions to.”  — Author Sam Horn, in Conzentrate: Get Focused and Pay Attention – When Life Is Filled With Pressures, Distractions, and Multiple Priorities (2000).

Concentration is becoming a lost art – for me, too!  It is such an important part of our lives – yet we are losing sight of it.  Life is all about what we pay attention to.  If we are paying all of our attention on the trivial, meaningless things – our lives will reflect exactly that – the trivial and meaningless.  If we put our attention and focus on meaningful, positive things, again, our lives will reflect that and we’ll have a meaningful, positive life.  This is profoundly simple – and one of life’s great truths.

“Our experience is what we attend to.” —William James

If we chronically multi-task and engage in scattered thoughts, we will have scattered, chaotic lives. The fast-paced world we live in is very distracting. We are constantly bombarded by information, e-mail, phone calls and news.

Learning or re-learning the art of focus and concentration helps us focus on and in the moment, instead of frantically rushing from moment to moment.  The Pareto Principle says that 80 percent of our results comes from only 20 percent of our efforts.  That means that only about 20 percent of our activities actually provide the results we are looking for.

So what would your life look like – how would it be different – if you devoted more time and energy to the crucial 20 percent of your activities?  Might you accomplish more, have better relationships, and more life satisfaction?  Why not give it a try for a day?  A  week?  A month?  It might turn into a great lifetime habit!  I’m certainly giving it a go!

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