In this blog post, I’ll talk about the importance of focus and why most people lack it. You’ll learn how to develop a plan of action for focusing on the important tasks. I’ll also explore how focus can be attained through motivation and structure, which are interrelated concepts that work together to produce results.
First, in order to learn how to develop a plan of action, let’s define what “focus” is in this context. Focus refers to the ability to set one clear goal for yourself that you consistently work towards daily without distraction or contemplation.
There will always be times when you have difficulty concentrating due to external factors that seem overwhelming at the time. However, you can avoid being overwhelmed. The key is in making a concerted effort each day and developing new habits that will help you stay focused for the long term.
Here’s the hard truth, and I’m sorry if this is a bit harsh:
You’re not focused because you’re not motivated or structured.
Motivation comes and goes. On certain days, our motivation and energy are at their peak. On other days, it appears to be waning. And without a plan in place to prevent the most important activities from being overlooked, motivation can also vanish just as quickly.
You cannot rely on motivation alone. That’s why you must rely on structure and habits first. This is how to develop a plan of action that works even on the days where you lack motivation.
Why Do You Need To Learn To Focus?
The challenge for many people is that they have a difficult time focusing on what’s important. They don’t know how to develop a plan of action. They don’t have a sense of priority, and instead, their focus is scattered over too many tasks at the same time. Sometimes, they avoid the tasks to do other things that are completely unproductive. Like playing video games or browsing on social media.
I’d be lying if I told you that I don’t browse social media. However, if I know that social media will cause me to lose focus on the projects that I’m working on, I’ll put my phone in a different room and get back to what I know is more important.
We all have the same 24 hours in a day. The people who are successful have learned to use their time wisely. They know how to develop a plan of action. Their focus is on what’s important, which allows them to get more done in less time. People don’t have a problem with motivation on the days when they’re working toward something that matters.
The following are five powerful things that you can develop habits that will help you stay focused. These habits can be applied to your work, personal life, and everything in between.
The Power Of A Planner or Work Management Platform
This is the most impactful way to show you how to develop a plan of action. Use a planner or work management platform (like Asana) to prioritize the things you have going on in your life. This includes the things that you need to do like working on specific projects or daily tasks. Your day is already filled with distractions. You don’t want distractions throwing off your entire schedule by interrupting you at the wrong time.
Keep important projects top-of-mind by adding them to Asana or jotting them down in your planner.
The Power Of Mornings
Most successful people will tell you that the morning hours are the most productive part of their day. This time is great because it’s impossible to be distracted by all of the things that happen later in the day. Make a schedule and stick to it as much as possible.
For me, I wake up between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m. every single day. 3 to 5 days a week, I hit the gym. While I’m at the gym, I listen to audiobooks. This keeps my mind and body in peak condition.
Now, I’m not telling you to jump into waking up at 3 a.m. Start by setting your alarm clock just an hour earlier for now. Each week, set it another hour earlier until you find the ideal time where you can be ultra-productive in the mornings. You don’t have to do 3 a.m. A couple of great examples: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson starts his day at 3:30 am and Michelle Obama is up and working out by 4:30 a.m.
The Power Of No More Than 90 Minutes
When you get into a groove, it’s easy to forget that there are other things that need to be done. And when you finally look up again, several hours have passed by. The problem is that you started off the day with low energy. If you’ve already expended all of your energy, you’re not going to have it for the important tasks later on.
Limit your high-energy work sessions to no more than 90 minutes. If you need a short 5-minute break after 60 minutes, take it and immediately get back into it.
The Power Of A Pomodoro Timer
A Pomodoro timer (like this one) is a great way to start learning how to develop a plan of action. This enables you to work for 90 minutes and then get up and take a 5-minute break. I’ve found that when I work in 90-minute increments, it’s easy to prioritize the tasks and get them done in a timely manner without spending time on things that just waste time.
Once I hit “START” on the timer, I know that I’ve got a limited amount of time to do as much as I can on productive work that will impact my life/business positively. This stops me from pulling out my phone and browsing social media and keeps me focused on the tasks at hand.
The Power Of Saying No
This is the most important habit, and it’s one that I’ve had to develop over time. If you’re like me, you’ll want to help everyone who asks for assistance. But unfortunately, that is not possible. You can’t do everything yourself! Whether it be work or personal life, make it a priority to say “no” to the things that will sap your energy.
No is one of the most freeing words you can ever say. No gives you mental space and time for yourself.
How To Develop A Plan Of Action For Focusing On The Important Tasks
If you want to be extremely productive, start your day the night before. Wait, what? The best way to learn how to develop a plan of action is to start your next day the night before the day begins.
Before you lay down for bed at night, write your to-do list down on your planner (or in Asana). Once you’ve done that, go through the list and prioritize it based on what needs to be done first. By creating the list and prioritizing it the night before, you’ll start your day off on the right foot. All of the most important tasks are already on your planner and you just have to focus on doing them.
No matter how good you are at managing your time, distractions will always find a way into your day. You have to put measures in place that keep those things from getting into your mind.
Now that you’ve started your day with a plan, all of the little distractions won’t matter because you’re focused on knocking out the important tasks.
The Importance Of Prioritization
When you get to the end of your 90-minute session, take a 5-minute break and then start another 90-minute session. During your break, do something relaxing like going for a walk outside or relaxing to some music.
If you have a high-priority task that can be done in less than 90 minutes, go ahead and knock it out so that you have less time during your next work session.
You don’t have to do them all at once, but it’s important to be efficient with the time you have. You don’t have to complete your entire to-do list every single day. As long as you always knock out the most important tasks, the tasks that actually push the needle forward, you’ll be set up to succeed.
Focus is key if you want to know how to develop a plan of action. It’s difficult to stay focused because of all the multitasking that goes on nowadays. Even though it seems like everyone is doing so many things at once, focus will always be important for success because it forces you to prioritize the tasks that will have the biggest impact on your life.
If you want to stay focused and feel motivated, follow this routine that gets you right into working for 90 minutes then taking a break. This allows you to get in peak productivity levels because when you sit down to work, it’s all about accomplishing what needs to be done instead of worrying about distractions.
Focus On Your Strengths Not Your Weaknesses
I’m an amazing designer. I can create a beautiful, fully-functional website in a matter of hours if I wanted to. But that doesn’t mean that I’m great at every aspect of website design. The important part is knowing how to develop a plan of action because I have a team that can do a lot of the heavy lifting for me.
Your strengths are always more important than your weaknesses, so don’t waste time trying to improve things you’re bad at. Instead, focus on what you’re good at and hire people to take care of the other things. This is how to develop a plan of action that grows your skills.
When you’re amazing at something, spend your time doing it. When you try to be great at too many things, you’ll end up being good at nothing. That is the reason why most people aren’t extremely successful. They spread themselves thin and try to do too much (and they usually end up failing).
You can always outsource work that you’re not good at and/or work that you don’t want to do. By delegating the work you don’t like, you allow yourself to have more time doing the things you actually enjoy.
How To Develop A Plan Of Action Conclusion
We all have a list of things we want to accomplish every day. But just because you have a list doesn’t mean that you’re going to get done all of the things on it. It’s important to know how to develop a plan of action so that you can set goals and follow a routine that allows you to get everything done in 90-minute chunks. Try to get in at least as many 90-minute chunks on your list each day as you can.
This routine is simple and very effective. It’s important to get in a rhythm that works for you and your schedule, so try this routine and then focus on what works and change the things that don’t work. After all, the goal is to accomplish as much as possible each day so you can be more successful and happy with your life.
Comment below and let me know what you think about the blog post “How To Develop A Plan Of Action For Focusing On The Important Tasks”. If you need some one-on-one help, reach out to me for a consultation. I’m always available to help new entrepreneurs!