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Be Like a Stamp!

This inspirational tidbit comes from the book 107 Ways to Stick to It.

To start, think about a lion tamer in an old-timey circus. Every lion tamer used three tools to control his fierce companions prowling around the cage: a whip, a stool and a handful of tasty snacks.

Of these tools, the most valuable was the stool. Why is that? When the lion tamer lifts the stool to face his snarling friends, the lions see the four stool legs and cannot focus on a particular leg. As a result, they stand frozen.

Similarly, the same can happen to us when we try to focus on too many things; we freeze, or we might focus on the wrong things. Either option will take the roar out of your success.

Here are five tips that highly successful people have used to sharpen their focus:

#1 - Identify your "one thing" Whether it’s clearing out your inbox or taking the first step on a large project, never let anything less important take priority over it during the time you’ve set aside for that task. As Josh Billings advises, "Be like a postage stamp. Stick to one thing until you get there."

#2 - Learn when to say "No" Your time, energy and money are precious resources. If you spend them in one area, you cannot spend them in another area. Saying "Yes" to one thing means saying "No" to something else. Say "No" to anything that prevents you from focusing on what's most important to you.

#3 - Keep it very simple Complexity is the enemy of focus. Simplicity keeps the line of sight to your goal clear and direct.

#4 - Life rewards action... so dive in and get to work! Future tasks usually appear larger than they really are. Being in the process provides clarity, diminishes the perceived effort required, and builds momentum toward your goal.

#5 - Worry wrecks your focus We all worry... the trick is to minimize the time between your first worried thought and your first action to attack it. Much of our worry is based on concerns in our minds, not reality. Mark Twain once said, "I've suffered a great many catastrophes in my life. Most of them never happened."

How many emails are open on your desktop as you read this? Or how many lingering items do you have on your to-do list? Perhaps, it’s time to identify one task or project and stick to it. Think about the one thing that absolutely needs your attention and when accomplished will help to propel you forward. So, go, be like a stamp and stick!

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