Learning to deal with multiple distractions is a daily hurdle that many people would love to overcome. In addition to the common ones such as Facebook, popular TV shows and gossip news, we often distract ourselves by attempting to tackle too many goals at once. I have a friend who is trying to start a business, but she loses focus whenever another “big idea” comes to mind. While her ambition is commendable, she has yet to make significant traction on any of her projects because her energy is divided by too many pursuits. I call this Squirrel Syndrome.
Squirrel Syndrome is a fun way of saying that someone is easily distracted. But it can seriously impact your ability to be successful if it goes unchecked.
So how do we overcome Squirrel Syndrome? The easiest thing to do is call it out. When you find your attention being pulled into a different direction, simply say to yourself “Squirrel!” If it doesn’t add any value to your life…forget about it and get right back to work. If the opposite is true, write it down and set a date/time to go after it. Doing so allows you to stay committed to your current pursuit without being weighed down by the fear of missing out on whatever it was that initially distracted you.
I’ve learned that successful people have this amazing ability to focus on a major pursuit until they have reached the level of mastery or profit they desire. Are they capable of juggling more than one at a time? Sure. Do they want to tackle more than one at time? Probably. But instead, they choose to listen to the wisdom of the almighty Bruce Lee:
“The successful warrior is the average man with laser focus.”
And if Bruce Lee said, it must be true.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jalyn Isley is a human resources manager at PepsiCo who has nearly ten years of experience in employee relations and talent development. She has built her career around helping professionals deliver results and position themselves for career success. In 2015, Jalyn founded her own practice, CEO Coaching, to help more people develop their inner CEOs and turn their goals into realities.
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