Tag Archives: focus

FOCUS

                I’ve heard so many successful people say that one needs Focus to create their dreams and goals.  I’ve heard one needs to eat, live and breathe what it is their heart desires to accomplish.  Focus.  That magic word that implies a hundred percent of one’s attention and aim going toward a result, or end product. 

                And then there is the phenomenon of losing oneself in a project.  Is that the same thing as Focus?  

                I think it is.  I’ve noticed those times when I’ve lost myself in my writing, where nothing else enters my mind but the story and the characters, where I am transported to the world of the story and it is all so very real that time vanishes and it’s as though I’ve broken through into another dimension.  During those times I can create freely and easily reach my writing goals.

                Actually I think of it more as a possession.  The writing possesses me.  The story possesses me.  I keep the story in my mind through the day.  It is always churning and growing in my head like a living thing that’s trying to be born.  It shows up in my dreams, it’s the first thing I think about when I wake up, it nags at me until I throw the words at the paper.  It is with me while I’m driving, shopping, working, running errands, doing dishes.

                When a story possesses me , that is how I Focus.  It becomes very important and won’t just go away.   Focus for me, is what my mind dwells upon throughout the day and night.  Sometimes I don’t even know the story is talking to me until I sit down and start to type.

                How many times have you sat down to write and thought: I don’t know what I’m going to write about?  Suddenly the first word comes, then the second and pretty soon you’ve written a page and can go on and on for hours?  I think that is Focus.  How do you Focus?

Nancy A. Niles is the author of: Vendetta: A Deadly Win and Lethal Echoes.

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The Alligator or The Leaves? What Are You Focusing On? by Sherrie Hansen

We recently returned from a mid-winter’s vacation to sunny Florida. I can’t tell you how fun it was to see water that was unfrozen, grass that was green, and flowers that were blooming after living in an all-white tundra for the past three months.

While we were there, we made a trip to the Everglades, which was described by our tour guide as a microcosm of life on earth. If all is well in the Everglades, all is evidently well on earth. Walking among the alligators and seeing hundreds of water birds living in the shallow swamp that is the Everglades did inspire many allegories in my mind, and my husband’s. So for my blog today, I’m borrowing a page from my husband’s sermon (he’s a pastor). He used my photos in his power point earlier today; I’m using his idea.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In this picture, the focus is on the leaves. They’re pretty, they’re green, they’re alive, they’re good, but as you can see in the second photo, they’re not what’s really important in this picture!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So often in life, we focus on the little things, to the detriment of what’s really important. As Christians, we may focus on squabbling denominations, political and religious issues, rites and rituals, and forget about what’s really important – grace, forgiveness, atonement, serving a Savior sent to die for our sins.   As people, we may focus on Facebook, checking our email, fixing dinner, getting our errands done and our bills paid and doing a million other things that may be good and well in their own right, but are distractions nonetheless. As writers, we may focus on promotions, classes, conferences, sales statistics, and current industry trends, and forget to write the best book we know how to write.

In today’s lesson at church, the Apostle Paul was so busy focusing on what he thought was important – sticking with the program, defending his religion against the new Christian zealots who claimed that Jesus was the Messiah, trying to keep things the way they’d always been – that he almost failed to see the alligator looming front and center, refusing to be ignored.

What are the leaves in your own life? What’s keeping you from seeing the alligator? If we open our eyes and look past the leaves that are cluttering our view and distracting us from seeing the bigger picture, we will be able to focus on what’s really important.

 

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