How to Focus on Just One Thing

November 9, 2023

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In today's episode, Rochelle explores how to focus on just one thing, a vital skill for any solopreneur looking to maximize productivity and minimize stress.

She shares why focusing on a single task not only simplifies your workflow but also increases your efficiency and effectiveness in achieving your business goals.

Focus on one thing effectively as a solopreneur with Rochelle’s practical tips and strategies:

  1. Create a Strategic Plan: Rochelle emphasizes the importance of having a strategic plan tailored to your life, budget, and business needs. While she offers her services for personalized plans, she acknowledges that not everyone may have access to such assistance. The crucial takeaway is to have a plan, whether obtained through webinars, courses, or other resources.
  2. Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals: Rochelle introduces the concept of S.M.A.R.T. goals—Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timely. She recommends associating a numeric value with your goals, making them more tangible and easier to track. Examples include the number of emails sent, social media posts scheduled, or hours dedicated to your business.
  3. Visible Reminders: The host stresses the importance of making your goals visible to avoid distractions. Rochelle suggests placing reminders where you're most likely to see them, whether on a planner, sticky notes on a mirror, or using smartphone widgets. The visual cues serve as constant reminders of your objectives.
  4. Attend Group Events: Encouraging audience interaction, Rochelle suggests participating in group events, whether virtual or in-person, to share and discuss your goals with other entrepreneurs. This not only creates a sense of accountability but also provides an opportunity to gain insights and support.
  5. Regular Goal Updates: Rochelle advises giving regular updates on your goals during these group events, fostering a habit of accountability and self-reflection. Whether successful or not, explaining the progress or reasons for a change in goals contributes to a more focused and intentional business approach.

Conclusion: Rochelle wraps up the episode by reminding listeners to be kind to themselves amid the challenges they face. She encourages self-care, emphasizing the importance of finding calm amidst the chaos and assures her audience that she is rooting for their success.

Keywords: struggle, focus, concentration, overwhelm, time management, productivity, goal setting, business challenges, work-life balance, burnout, distractions, stress, entrepreneurship hurdles, task prioritization, self-care

TRANSCRIPT (CLICK TO EXPAND)

So here are a few tips for how to keep yourself focused during this time of year. Especially if you have a lot going on, or maybe you're like me and you're kind of balancing things and trying not to do too much, to the point where you're going to burn yourself out.

So, whatever it is, whatever plan it is that you're following, pick one and stick to it.

This is compassionate side hustle strategy hosted by me, Rochelle Sanchez. I help solopreneurs like you build good habits and compassionate systems that allow you to show up consistently and authentically in your business. The end goal is to help you onboard a virtual assistant who is 100% aligned with your mission and within your budget, but there are a few things you should probably get in place first, right? That's why we're here.

You deserve to do what you love for a living. And I believe that you're closer than you think. So clear your schedule and let's get to work on the next best step for you on your business journey.

Let's talk about ways that you can get yourself to stay focused. Right now in this quarter, before the holiday seasons, or really any time of year.

So I know that a lot of us. Really struggle with focusing on one thing, especially if you are trying to use social media as part of your marketing plan. And of course, while you're using social media, then you're being fed all of this content and all of these ads that are telling you what you're getting wrong.

And, you know, there's a reason for that because that's what ads do, is that they... they poke you in all the right emotional places and they make you feel like you're missing out. Or you're doing something wrong. Or you're totally missing something and setting yourself up for failure.

But I think that it's possible to keep yourself focused and to make sure that you're paying attention to what actually matters to you and your specific business right now, rather than being the straight a student who has got a 4.0 and is trying to just be the best at everything.

And I'm speaking from experience here, of course.

So here are a few tips for how to keep yourself focused during this time of year. Especially if you have a lot going on, or maybe you're like me and you're kind of balancing things and trying not to do too much, to the point where you're going to burn yourself out.

First of all, I recommend having a plan. And obviously I would love for that to be me, the person that you're working with, to make a plan and that will work with your life and your budget and just how things are going for you in business right now.

But not all of you can work with me, so the important thing here is to have a plan.

So whether that's a plan that you got via a webinar that you attended, or maybe you're taking a course and you're like, I really need to implement that stuff.

Maybe you're following along with one of my articles or courses and you're like, okay, I'm just going to stick to this and I'm not going to touch anything else.

Whatever it is. Just make sure that you have a strategic plan. That's going to get you to where you want to be. In the next, like three or four ish months.

I used to say to sit down and make a plan. But then I actually very recently realized learning from people that I've been talking to you and my clients and how they give me feedback is that not everybody has a strategic brain.

And so not everyone is actually capable of creating a plan from scratch to follow.

So, whatever it is, whatever plan it is that you're following, pick one and stick to it.

Now, of course having the plan is one thing and sticking to it is another.

And that's why we want to figure out a way to focus that works for you and how your brain works and how your life is going right now.

And I have a few tips for that.

So first of all, you want to set a S.M.A.R.T. goal for yourself and you may or may not have heard of this, but a smart goal is basically a way of setting a goal, so that. It's actually achievable and it is something that you can work toward.

And you also know when you've hit it. Or when you came up short.

And so the acronym acronym, I won't spend too much time on this, but the acronym is, , S.M.A.R.T.

It stands for something specific, something that's measurable, something that's attainable or achievable, you know, just basically if it's possible.

Something that is relevant. So you're not just like taking some random idea and forcing yourself to stick to it or achieve it at this time of year.

And then it has to be timely. So you have to have an actual date set for when you want to achieve it.

Because setting a goal could mean that you want to achieve that between now and like the end of your life.

But most likely, if you're listening to this podcast, then you have a goal that you want to focus on for the immediate timeframe.

You can go down a limited rabbit hole if you want to just looking at smart goals and how to set them.

But I think the most important piece for me with setting these goals for myself or with clients is that you have to have a number associated with it. As much as I love feelings and emotions and listening to yourself and being intuitive.

It's usually a lot easier just on your brain and on your everyday life if you have a number associated with a goal that you want to do and that you make sure that the goal is something... well. The number that you're measuring is something that is achievable by you.

So it's a number of actions that you take. A number of events. A number of things that you accomplish or finish.

So for example, emails sent. Like if you plan on emailing all of your, all the people in your network and, you know, Re-establishing those ties with them. A number of emails set.

A number of social media posts scheduled. So. with that one It's a little tricky because you want to actually schedule them and post them.

Because a lot of people, I feel like we make all kinds of content or we take extra videos and we don't actually post them.

So number of posts scheduled and actually ready to go.

Uh, maybe a number of coffee chats that you've had with people. So not just saying, I really want to try to have three coffee chats with new people to expand my network, but you actually have them, right?

How many coffee chats have you had with a real person? And they don't have to be these big extravagant things, but a number of coffee chats that you've have had.

Or another one that I think is actually really simple and not a lot of people use, which is number of hours worked on your business. Because, and this is something that I've been struggling to figure out how to say without sounding like I'm one of those people, who's like, "You're just not working hard enough!"

But really, if, if you think about it, how many hours are you actually spending directly focused with your undivided attention on your business. And the trick with that is that it does not count all of the hours of worry that you have about your business.

Like you're, you're not counting that.

You're not counting that toward this number, although they absolutely are important to know. But you can't measure them, right? Who can actually measure how much you're worrying. All day, every day.

But if you commit to tracking how much time you actually spend on your business, then maybe you can set a goal for like, I really want to spend a solid 10 hours this month on my business alone.

Now, remember when you're setting these goals, it's not about setting yourself up for failure or setting the bar too high, or stretching yourself outside your comfort zone.

Like all of those cliche phase phrases that you're used to, I would recommend just like with how the world is right now and how much stress you must be under and all this lake. Just the rippling stress levels that are happening all over us, because you're just, you care about a lot of things and a lot of things are out of your control. I want to make sure that you set a goal for yourself that you know is just data.

It's just the number of things that you're like, that would be nice if I could do that. And that if I did it, then it would help me. And if I didn't do it, then I'll learn. Because I'll figure out why I couldn't do that for myself.

So we've got having a smart goal. And then, uh, making sure that it is something that's new numeric that you can actually measure.

And then what I recommend is putting it everywhere. Because if you're like me, I forget things all the time and it's really hard for me to remember what I'm focusing, trying to focus on when I'm I have all of these other things going on in my life.

And so I try to put my goal everywhere so that I'll see it all the time.

And then what you want to do is make sure that that goal that you're working toward is front and center somewhere where you can actually see it all the time.

So it depends on what you use to stay organized.

And I don't mean like staying super duper organized, and like you have everything together. Like we're all kind of a mess behind the scenes.

It's like hot mess behind the scenes of every business that I've ever seen.

But for yourself, what is it that helps you remember things?

For some people it's a sticky note.

So a message written on a sticky note.

You put it on your bathroom window, a mirror, and you remember because while you're brushing your teeth or doing your usual bathroom routine, then you can see it and you can say, okay. Yeah. I'm still committed to that. That is still my goal.

And I'm going to keep myself aware of that.

So that I don't end up like flip-flopping and choosing something else.

The sticky notes don't really work for me.

In my case, I really like having my goals like front and center on my planner. I use planner pages that I designed for myself just because I couldn't find anything that really worked among all of the options out there.

But I use just a regular three ring binder. And then on the front, if you're listening to the audio version of it, I have a colorful piece of paper.

It's one of those, you know, plastic binders that has the, the window in front.

And so I have a sheet of paper that says Q4 and it says it's okay to lay low. Create in private.

Because that's just kind of a theme that I'm going with right now.

And my goals. R to build my list to 1000. And then. The second one is to just be consistently working out often.

And so those are the two things that I'm working on. The second one, it doesn't really follow my rule of having, you know,

uh, number, but. It's the second one. It's like a secondary type of goal, but the main goal is to grow my list of six. To 1000, uh, people or readers or whatever. And so that's one option.

So you've got a sticky note option. You've got a binder option or whatever surface it is that you use where you're doing your business, make sure that you write it there and you see it all the time.

If you're more of a phone person. Now, I personally don't recommend running your business from your phone, because I think that the phone culture is so unpredictable. And it's really, it's kinda messy.

Especially when you think about like addiction patterns and then like data. Data issues. And then like phone, phone addiction issues that we're having and then privacy.

And you're just like all that stuff. And plus I think that if you're attached to your phone all the time, then it's, it's hard to separate your life from your business. Especially if all of it exists on this little device that you're always looking at. And I think that it's just like very easy to get addicted, to scrolling and consuming social media content. But

if you really are one of those people who has like a pretty good handle on your device usage, and you're like, you know what?

I don't actually use it that much. I make a solid effort not to. Uh, have my eyeballs on my phone and I'm really conscious of that.

Then I think it would be worthwhile to use some kind of widget for your smartphone where you type in you know what your goal is.

And I don't mean anything, super fancy, like, you know, using templates or uh, backgrounds or making some fancy graphic. I mean, just use like a widget for whatever note taking app you use.

So for me personally, I write down all my random thoughts in Google keep. And Google keep has a widget that's available for my phone where I can just highlight one of those notes.

And what I do is I keep it on my home screen.

So like it's the screen that opens up whenever you unlock your phone. I think for a lot of you iPhone users, there's like a big thing about like what's on your lock screen.

So you could probably put it there, but for me, and using an Android. I like to put my goal in a little sticky note or some kind of widget note taking app and make it by itself on my phone. Like.

So that every time I grabbed my phone and I unlock it, then I see that first.

And just to have it top of mind for myself, especially if you change it pretty often, then your brain's going to be like, oh yeah, I forgot about that.

Oh yeah. And, uh, you know, it, it works.

And my last tip for you is to, and this isn't specifically based on your goal and what your, the goal that you're setting for yourself right now.

But my tip is for you to make some kind of effort to attend like group events. Whether they're virtual or in-person or whatever, do at least once. One once a month where you get to tell people what you're working on.

And I have found that that's really helpful because basically it's my opportunity to say what my goal is to somebody else that I don't know.

Or maybe it's someone that you do know. But the point is that you're actually interacting with another person.

And then ideally that other person is also a business owner. So that you have that connection and that understanding, versus like, I mean, we all have day jobs. But when you explain your goal to someone who isn't quite in it, like in the arena with you.

With, uh, growing a business and figuring this stuff out, then it can, I think that the, the interaction is a little different because in their, from their point of view, you're working on some kind of like fantasy. You know?

Unless they have specific personal or relative experience with running a business and starting a business.

But I think that it's a lot more helpful when you tell it to another business owner.

So trying to get yourself to some kind of event, at least once a month. And then make sure that you're saying the same goal every time, right?

So you... let's say that you find a group of entrepreneurs on like eventbrite and then you meet up with them uh, virtually on zoom and then you all share your goals.

And then the next month you meet up again if you like them, if you like the vibe and you're like, I want to come back here. When you just share your goals, then ideally you would give an update on your previous goal, right.

And how it worked out, or you would give an explanation of why you, you changed your mind. 'cause that's valid too. Right?

Sometimes we set a goal for ourselves and then the reason that it doesn't stick is because it wasn't the right one, but the only way that you're going to know that is if you actually do what you can to make it happen.

So that's it for today. I hope that that was helpful for you, especially if you were having trouble focusing on one thing at a time.

Please remember to be cautious about how you're treating yourself these days. I know that there's a lot going on in the world and you are being affected by it in one way or another.

And I hope that you're staying safe. You're taking good care of yourself. Take good care of your nervous system. Spend time with yourself to just find that calm or that sense of whatever it is that you need right now and give it to yourself, okay?

I know that you're going through a lot right now, and I am still rooting for you. I still want you to succeed with running your business and I hope that we get to work together soon.

So if you would like to see how you can work with me, you can go to Rochelle sanchez dot com and find out all the ways that I can help you on your business journey.

I'm also really into LinkedIn these days. So if you want to find me on there, I'm on LinkedIn, you can send me a DM or a connection request.

Just let me know that you listen to my podcast and we can chat in the DMS.

All right. That's it for today. Bye. 

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