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How to focus on just one thing

I have a very small attention span.

 

I’ve never really learned how to focus and am more than content to follow one random idea after another.

 

Maybe it has something to do with all the years of bombardment by commercials and all the other ads I’ve been exposed to.

 

Maybe it’s the ADHD.

 

Regardless, I usually cannot focus on one thing for long.

 

I bet I’m not the only one.

 

Given all of the time I currently have on my hands, I am going to give this whole focusing thing a try.

 

Here’s how I am going to teach myself how to focus on one thing.

 

Stop doing other things

This sounds ridiculously obvious, but it’s still a common problem.

 

You can’t focus on everything at the same time. You also cannot focus properly when you try to focus on a few things at one time.

 

I often find myself watching something on TV, thinking about other things and Googling shit on my phone at the same time.

 

That’s not the ADHD (okay, it’s not just the ADHD), it’s me being a glutton.

 

As soon as I find myself disengaging mentally from one activity, I jump to the next. It’s like I am literally giving all of my interests their own screen time.

 

I need to stop doing other things and start focusing on one thing.

 

Otherwise the things I produce will always be in crappy intervals.

 

I’m a NEET. I don’t have to make myself feel busy. I am not. I am free to take my time with things and do them right.

 

Even if you aren’t one of the funemployed, you can still benefit from taking your time to do one thing right.

 

You can also go balls to the wall and do one thing immediately.

 

Stop doing other things and focus on the task at hand.

 

That’s usually the first rule I break, but I will resist the urge to jump from one thing to another by reigning myself in.


 

Give yourself a time limit

I write all of these essays on this blog in thirty minutes.

 

Some are good. Some are bad. Some are long. Some are short.

 

All are written in thirty minutes.

 

Thirty minutes is all my back can tolerate in my current setup. Thirty minutes is all my mind can take when it’s doing something I’d rather avoid when I lack “inspiration”.

 

If you want to focus on something entirely and get yourself into the zone, give yourself a time limit.

 

I have to write no matter what in thirty minutes. I’m in a race to beat myself because I am ridiculously competitive. I want to keep my writing skills in tip top shape as well as explore my thoughts in a more tangible way.

 

I’m also really good at finding an excuse for not writing right now. Or for long. Or in a format that takes too much time…

 

My passion for writing is pretty fickle. If I had an audience to keep me honest, I think it’d be different.

 

But since I am the only one reading these words, it’s hard to keep going all the time.

 

I already know the things I am writing. If there’s not one reading them, then why keep writing?

 

By giving myself a time limit, I put am limit to the amount of time I dedicate to the doubts and neuroses you read above.

 

Since I only have to write for thirty minutes and since I only have thirty minutes to write, I focus on the words as opposed to anything else.

 

That lets me do more than I would if I had all the time in the world.

 

It keeps me from wasting my entire day.

 

For at least thirty minutes, I am doing something worthwhile that helps me hone my craft.

 

What could you get done in thirty minutes?

 

Shit, what couldn’t you get done in thirty minutes?


 

Give yourself breaks

It’s a lot easier to focus when I know that I can take a break after thirty minutes (more or less).

 

I love taking walks, grabbing something to eat, taking a nap, watching something on TV and especially stretching.

 

Focusing on one thing for any amount of time is mentally exhausting.

 

Not only does my lower back feel sore, but my mind feels like putty after I’ve been writing or editing for a while.

 

I like getting up and physically separating myself from my projects.

 

Currently, I am building a membership website for marketers who want to learn how to create their own content.

 

Apart from the crippling self-doubt and fear of failure that comes with entrepreneurship, there is also the fact that I have to do everything myself.

 

Including all of the writing.

 

Not only do I have to do everything, I have to prioritize and do multiple things at once to see any progress.

 

I take a lot of breaks to deal with all of the emotions and tasks. I need to. It keeps me somewhat sane.

 

I suggest you do the same. No matter what kind of work you do or life you live, take a damn break.

 

They are so awesome for you.


 

Remember why that one thing matters

This is a tactic I am using a lot recently.

 

I try to remember why it is that I am doing the things that I am doing.

 

Are those reasons still valid? Do they feel kind of hollow now that I’m doing the work? Do I find myself avoiding the work at all costs?

 

If something stops mattering to me, then I stop doing the work.

 

Given my love for the NEET lifestyle, I don’t want to go back to a day job. They suck for people like me.

 

I love doing the work, but I don’t want to go to work. That means it’s time to try entrepreneurship.

 

I write every single day. I doubt myself every single day. I remember why I do what I do every single day.

 

I want to make it as a NEET and an entrepreneur. Why not, right?

 

I want to live my life as I want to and I want to have all the time in the world to do as I wish.

 

That matters more than anything to me so I make sure to remember that when I want to take another three hour nap.

 

I remember why the work I avoid matters. Then I get back to it.


 

These are the ways I have learned to focus on one thing at a time.

 

Try it for yourself and see what happens.

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