What do you spend your time focusing on? Are you thinking about why you are not qualified for the promotion? Or are you obsessing over the waitress that gave you bad service? Or are you fixated on the co-worker that rarely pulls his weight?
I did all of the above, to my detriment. I repeatedly focused on the small stuff and majored in minor things. So my day was spent reacting to situations which adversely affected how I led my team, how I influenced others and ultimately how I did my work.
I am not sure when it happened, but I began to ask myself,
"Will this matter in 5 years?" If the answer is no I refocus, and over the years I have developed a system of questions that I ask myself:
- What is my emotional state?
- Am I taking care of myself?
- Will this matter in 5 years?
- What is the best thing that happened to me today?
- What could I have done better?
- What is the most important thing I should be doing today?
- Who are the most influential people in my life and what am I doing for them?
- Who have I helped today?
What you focus on is a direct indicator on the lid of your success. Asking yourself the eight questions is critical in making that 1% shift in your thinking. So schedule time to answer the questions, I set three alarms on my iPhone, and I take five minutes to answer the eight questions. I don’t write them down. I just answer them in my head.
The questions will keep you focused on doing the important work that needs to get done; on the opportunities that will help you create value for others.