One of the largest distractors in the home is television. Especially when shark week has been on this past week. You and I spend a good number of wasted hours watching television shows and movies. Like shark week, some television shows are informative, but they are mostly there for entertainment. My son and I are just as guilty. Spending several hours watching the latest shark explorations, it has almost become a tradition in our home every year.
Is Television Holding You Back?
It is easy to get pulled into TV shows and gorge yourself with a great television series. Suspense is a powerful feeling that sways decision-making. There are many TV shows like American Idol, The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones and others that take the lead at the workplace and reduce productivity. Maybe it was the big upset or a bad call on Sunday that ends up being Monday morning’s focus. Television completely takes the helm and alters better judgement.
My favorite advice comes from the popular Habits of the Wealthiest Business People infographic. Watch sixty minutes or less of television and avoid reality TV. Basically, you should concentrate on spending the day improving or moving forward towards your objectives. Be a more productive person who achieves their dreams, not one who just chases them. Television is one of those distractions that challenges long-term focus. It eats your opportunities to be productive.
3 Questions to Ask Yourself When Setting Priorities
Here are a few ideas to reduce the distraction of television or any other one we have discussed in recent weeks. Create a priority list for the following day before you go to sleep. Commit yourself to a system where you can measure progress. Do not stop there. Answer these three questions too:
- Why are you doing this?
- How are you going to do this?
- What will this look like after you have completed it?
This will give you a clear picture of what tomorrow will seem like. Your future starts when you wake up, so pre-commit to your priorities by answering the questions above. Keep to 3 priorities. Only assume as much as you can finish. You can do anything you put your mind to, but you cannot do everything.
When you prioritize, give consideration to what is more important. These are the things in life that motivate you. Spiritually, relationships, passions, self-improvement, health, etc. Each one of us has a different list. Know what is valuable so you can remove the stress from decision-making.
How to Build Long-Term Focus
Building long-term focus requires you to have goals and a plan. Have high aspirations and develop Big Hairy Audacious Goals that Jim Collins discusses in Good to Great. Take action each day or week that works towards the progress of your goals and purpose. For instance, if you want to build a small business, you should devote daily or weekly reading to marketing, building an ideal customer profile, and networking. Doing this will get you nearer to your goal of starting your small business. Watching shark week on television will probably not have the same effect, unless your business concerns are television or sharks.
Only you can change your routine and way of life and nobody else can do it for you. Taking small steps towards your goals will help you accomplish what you set out to do. Apply yourself to improve each day. You are the only person responsible for your success.