Pay phones, typewriters, and snail mail are three things that were once extremely popular, but now are seldom used–replaced by smart phones, computers, and e-mail. These changes have changed the way we work. It used to be we worked from 9-5, in an office, on weekdays. Now, the lines are blurred between work days and off days. Life balance is something we once strived for, but now is obsolete.
To pine for pay phones, typewriters, and snail mail are fine, but it doesn’t change the fact they are no longer realistic options for how we now live and work. It’s time to give up the idea of a balanced life and acknowledge that times have changed and we must accept that being constantly connected and beyond busy is a way of life. Sure, we could go on a digital diet, work from home to save the commute time, and cut back on how much sleep we get, but like any diet, it usually won’t last. Instead, what can do, and should do, is be 100 percent focused on what we are working on, who we are with, and what’s right in front of us at this moment.
Focus is more important than ever–it’s just different than it was several years ago. The ability to be all-in when it matters most means we give our kids our undivided attention when they need us. We focus on the task at hand when at work to be more efficient and effective than starting and stopping over and over again. If we can focus on one thing for as long as we can and not distract ourselves, that may just be what balance is about in today’s world.
Since we can’t focus on everything equally:
1. What needs 100% of your attention right now?
2. What can you get rid of right now to free up time to focus on something that matters more this month? (Since we can’t do it all, what doesn’t need to be done?)
3. If money were no object, what would you focus on? Now, what could / should you focus on because it makes you the most money?