How to Avoid Distraction and Stay Focused and Motivated on Goals and Priorities in Life
It’s hard to stay focused on your goals. At first, you’re motivated but over time, that motivation begins to wear off, then distraction sets in. You get caught up, stuck, frustrated and eventually veer off track. Staying focused has never been an easy task for the human mind.
It’s easier to let life get the best of us, but it’s not okay to veer so far off track that we forget what we truly want out of life and why we really want it. If you’re finding it hard to stay focused on your goals, know that you are not alone. Most of us are getting distracted all the time. It has nothing to do with you as a person. It has even less to do with your character. You can train your mind to stay focused on the important stuff. I’ve got a few tips here to help teach your mind to quiet down the distractions and stay focused on what you need to do.
#1 – Start Out by Writing Out your Goals.
If you haven’t done this, then you’re missing the most important part of effective goal setting. When you don’t write your goals, they stay in the abstract. They’re less real, even if you think they’re as real as they can be. You need to put them down and get very specific about them. This will help you tackle your goals in the right way.
#2 – You’ll Need to Create a Mission Statement.
After writing out your goal, you’ll need to create a mission statement to help direct your time and energy towards the things that matter most to you and help you stay focused on those all-important goals. What do you value? What do you believe in? What do you want to achieve or accomplish? How are you doing things differently than others? Create a detailed mission statement in 4 to 5 sentences and hang it somewhere so you can see it every single day. When you get distracted or lose your focus, re-read your mission statement and re-envision why you’re doing what you’re doing on a daily basis.
#3 – You Need to Learn to Manage your Time Effectively.
You can’t stay focused on your goals if you can’t manage your time. Unless you do, you won’t see yourself progressing. Manage your time effectively and you’ll see yourself succeeding and reaching your goals. Prioritize your activities daily. You can do this by finding a time management scheme that works and work with it.
One of the best ones you can find out there is the quadrant time management system. It splits your daily activities up into four separate quadrants based on two factors. The first is “urgency”, while the other is “importance”. Your daily activities might be urgent and important, neither of those two, or one or the other. The point, however, is to stay away from time-wasting activities, which are the not urgent and not important (quadrant 4). It’s easy to lose focus on your goals when you’re engaged in this quadrant for much of the day, which includes things like excessively using social media, over-socializing with friends, and so on.
#4 – Develop Milestones Towards your Goals.
When your goals seem so far off, it’s difficult to stay motivated. You’re looking to achieve a certain goal one, two, three, or even 5 years from now, how are you suppose to stay motivated today? No doubt it’s difficult. But, it’s far easier if you can create a set of milestones towards your goals.
To create your milestones, just break down your goals into equal parts. Carefully construct them to help you move forward rather than hold you back towards achieving your goals. It’s much easier to stay focused this way because they seem more reasonable than our long-term goals, yet, it’s still sending us in the same direction.
#5 – You Need a Solid Plan.
Usually, we end up failing without a plan. If you’re serious about your goals, and you want to stay hyper-focused on achieving them, create a plan. Envisioning your goals vividly enough won’t cut it. You need to construct a plan. But this shouldn’t just be any plan; it has to be a massive action plan, a plan that you’re going to take action towards on a daily basis, without throwing in that proverbial towel.
Look, it’s difficult achieving the goals we set for ourselves, but, clearly, it’s possible since others have come before us and achieved that and much more, even while starting off with more disadvantageous situations. You can reach your goals as long as you can follow a plan. If you see the plan isn’t working, all you have to do is slightly change your direction. It doesn’t take much. But it does take consistency.
#6 – Evaluate your Growth on a Daily Basis.
One vital way you can stay focused on your goals is to track and evaluate your progress. In fact, how else would you know just how far you’ve come towards achieving your goals or just how much there’s left to go? Every established goal should be tracked and analyzed on a daily basis. Either, money goal, or a weight-loss goal, or some other goal, track the numbers that matter, this will bring you closer to your goal. This way, if you see that something isn’t working, you can fix it before it’s too late.
Use your smartphone or a worksheet on your laptop to design your results on a daily basis. The more records you have, the more you can scrutinize and conclude just which of your efforts are paying off and which ones are being wasted.
#7 – Avoid Procrastination.
Procrastination they say; is the thief of time. Sometimes, staying focused on our goals means avoiding procrastination. We could always do more to avoid procrastination since it haunts all of us to some extent. But we also know that it isn’t simple by any means to take action as opposed to putting it off just a little bit longer.
One simple way to avoid procrastination is to use the 15-minute rule. Simply grab your smartphone or any other device with a timer and set it to 15 minutes. The concept 15 minutes is a number that’s too small to fail at. We can all do something for 15 minutes. Commit to doing whatever it is that you’ve been putting off for 15 minutes, no more. Once the 15 minutes are up, you can choose to stop. Or, if the drive is on your side, keep going. What you’ll find is that, after 15 minutes, you’ll usually want to keep going. And, even if you stop, you at least broke the seal. You stopped procrastinating, even if it was only for a short while.
Achieving our goals becomes easier when we learn to stay motivated and focused on it. You won’t achieve this state overnight. It will take a lot of self-discipline and consistency. Keep the end goal in mind and break down the larger end result into manageable smaller steps. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you fail at first. It’ll definitely get easier over time as you progress. Share your thoughts with me on this in the comments. Also, please share this article with your friends.