Focus was the first word to enter my mind when Douglas Hommert sent me this picture. Doug is a phenomenal photographer and knowing my love of hawks he sends me incredible pictures. I named the hawk pictured below Focus. He helps me remember.
I am in constant pursuit of focus. Focus produces simplicity which increases productivity. Basketball players might use the word efficiency instead of productivity. What they mean is there is no wasted motion. Productivity means there is no wasted life. When my life is productive or efficient I am able to build my family and career. My life will have balance. This is why I consider focus and simplicity of utmost importance.
What are two things we can do to develop the focus and simplicity necessary for a balanced life?
Focus is saying No
“People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully. I’m actually as proud of the things we haven’t done as the things I have done. Innovation is saying no to 1,000 things.”
Steve Jobs, (Apple Worldwide Developers’ Conference, 1997)
The first step toward focus is developing the courage to say no. Focus will be elusive and simplicity impossible until we learn to say no.
Simplicity is Hard Work
“That’s been one of my mantras — focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.”
Once we learn to say no and become focused we must eliminate the idea that simple is easy.