I set out to make 2017 different and identified six strong goals I wanted to accomplish, which I broke down into six daily and manageable habits.
I even printed out a habit tracker. January 1st, I did great and hit all of those goals. January 2nd – not so much. And then the following week was not great either.
So, what happened? I was beating myself up for not being more together and having enough will power to get these amazing daily habits accomplished. Logically, I know that if I stick with these habits, I will succeed on some amazing lifetime goals.
What is wrong with me?
Focus on The One Thing and Increase Productivity
I wasn’t focusing on one thing. In the attempt to do many great things, I did nothing great.
In his book, The One Thing, Gary Keller (free with Kindle Unlimited membership) talks about the lie of multitasking and how important it is to focus on just one thing at a time. Focusing on one thing and doing that one thing to your best of your ability can make a bigger impact in your life than stretching yourself and talents to do five things at once. Keller says, “You need to be doing fewer things for more effect instead of doing more things with side effects.”
In the book, Keller says that humans are only capable of developing one habit it a time. He says that it’s not that we lack discipline but focus. He also talks about how we have limited will power as an individual, no matter who we are. No matter how badly we want to, we can’t just withdrawal will power from a bank. He says that one’s will power is strongest in the beginning of the day. This lines up with the “eat that frog” idea from Brian Tracy, who says to accomplish your hardest task first thing.
So, I am focusing on one goal – one habit. It is killing this list-loving, A-type personality of mine.
The goal is to exercise first thing in the morning, every morning.
I won’t focus on any other goals, but I am hoping that by accomplishing the big-to-me goal of working out early in the morning has a halo effect to other areas of my life. Today is the first day of accomplishing this goal and so far, I’ve experienced increased productivity. Since I worked out, I have chosen healthier meals, accomplished my work goals, had more energy to do chores and homeschooling, and have been in a better mood with my kids.
I challenge you to focus on one thing. Even though you might have a full list of things you want to accomplish this year, focus on the one thing that you believe will have the biggest impact on your life and career.
Then do your one thing first thing in the morning before you do anything else. Once you accomplish that, it doesn’t matter if you don’t get anything else done in that day. You are still on track to accomplishing your goal. However, I truly believe that if you focus on one thing for several months, you are automatically going to accomplish other goals and dreams.
For 2016, I set several goals too, but the only one I accomplished and focused on was reading over 20 books. I ended up reading 21 complete books, and I started a handful of other books. However, that wasn’t the only thing I accomplished that year. My income increased substantially in 2016 and was able to increase my productivity, and I believe that was a positive side effect from reading business and self-improvement books.
What’s the one thing you want to focus on this year?