I have often heard that the key to achieving your goals is focus. It’s a simple concept really, but one that I can’t say that I have put much stock in, until recently that is. Lately I have found when I start to do something creative I am easily distracted. Sometimes I feel like I am almost looking for things to sidetrack me. I may have every intention to play my bass, but I keep inventing road blocks to keep me from it. Mundane things, like it’s too cold, or hot, or I don’t have enough time to devote to it today so why bother. It’s always something. I know I am just procrastinating, but I am not sure why. Fortunately I am starting to recognize when I am doing this, which to me is the first step in breaking this bad habit.
When I truly focus on a task, I find that not only do I achieve my goal, but I do so quickly and efficiently. I’m starting to realize that even if I only have 15 minutes to practice today, if I truly focus, I can still be productive and improve my skills. When I do have a significant chunk of time to devote to practicing I have learned that if I close my email app and my web browser (unless I’m utilizing online learning resources) I get a lot more done. With no alerts popping up to distract me I am free to focus solely on the music. It actually kind of liberating.
I find that I can accomplish so much more when I adopt this working style. Suddenly I have the time to run through half my bands set list, work on my TMBG lessons and even write a blog post, where before I would be lucky to achieve one of these things in the same amount of time.
In today’s digital, instant gratification world, it’s easy to get caught up in it to the point of information overload. If you find yourself in a similar situation, feeling like you never have enough time to get the things done that you want to, take a step back and try to just focus on one task. Remove any unnecessary distractions and just play, or write, or whatever it is you need to do. I bet you too will find that you can accomplish more than you ever thought you could. Just focus.