FOCUS
  • Concentrating efforts along the right priorities in an effective manner
  • Honing attention, time and energy into fulfilling specific responsibilities
  • Guarding against distractions and saying “no” to that which degrades high-quality performance

COMMENTARY:
There are numerous distractions around us throughout the day that can hinder our need to focus. Cell phones, family and friends, co-workers, and the internet are among the things that cause us to lose focus. The need to focus requires us to set our minds into an area that allows us to not be distracted. Let’s dive more into focus and ways to help accomplish concentration efforts at all times.

I am usually the one who checks over my 6th grade daughter’s math homework, which is usually daily, and can be a grueling task.  It has been a while since I was in 6th grade, so it may take me a little time to refresh myself with 6th grade math, and at times I must focus to make sure I tell her the correct way to solve the problems. I realize sometimes when reviewing her work that she is not focusing in on what she is doing because of the simple errors that she makes, like adding wrong, not lining up the division problem correctly, the positive number should be negative, etc. When it becomes very common that she makes these simple errors, I once told her I would give her more work if she keeps making these simple mistakes and not focusing on her work.  It may sound a little harsh, but the goal is to get her to concentrate and direct her attention to putting her best work forward.  If she puts her best work forward when she does her homework, I believe she will do the same in class and on tests.

So how do we as adults strive to find the focus needed to concentrate towards the right priorities and guard against distractions?

1)    Find a “No Matter What” zone to accomplish goals you have set.  A “No Matter What” zone means that nothing and no one can bother you or interrupt your time to focus, nor can people use your time and energy for useless banter.  
2)    Hiding your cell phone so that you won’t be tempted to reply to every text message or read every email until you complete your current task.
3)    Taking a break away from your computer to give your brain some time to relax and reset for a little while.  Grab a drink, take a walk, or getting some fresh air can help put your mind at ease. 

The filing window is amongst us, and the ways to focus we talked about previously should be considered. There will be days where we work long hours and even come in on the weekends to finish filing applications, so frequent breaks and “No Matter What” zones will become more important to us all. There are many ways people choose to focus and I hope I have helped with a few ways to help with yours.
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Key Words and Phrases
To concentrate attention; Emphasis; Fasten; Center; Train; To have a clear perception; To bring to focus.

Opposite Terms
Blurry; Out of focus; Without direction.

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