Focus. Focus. Focus.
I used to grit my teeth and squint my eyes to try to will myself to focus.
I tried my best to wage a fierce war against the distractions.
But there were always bunnies. Cute fluffy bunnies doing bunny things. I’d find a few minutes (maybe seconds) of focus and then, hop, hop, hop, a bunny (also known as a thought) would break my concentration. I would chase it (because it was a bunny) and along the way I’d find more and more bunnies.
I would give in to the bunnies, to the fluffiness. I would admit defeat in my quest for focus. There was nothing I could do, I thought. I’ve been diagnosed with ADHD, I thought. There’s no hope, I thought.
I was so so wrong.
Last week, three separate people complimented me on my ability to focus. I was stunned and speechless the first time, curious the second time and highly amused and inspired by the third time.
And I realized that yes I can focus (like a champ). Yes it is challenging. Yes it does take practice. Yes I’m aware of the bunnies—and sometimes I chase them, but I come back. I always come back.
I had an endurance-focused swim workout this morning. Endurance, for this recovering sprinter, is a beast. It’s also a great opportunity to play with focus.
I focused on one length at a time. “Right here. Right now,” I told myself. 25. 50. 75. 100. 125… Who is that chick in the lane next to me? Whoa bunny. I felt my stroke get sloppy. My strong, smooth, 85% effort became a struggle.
Bring it back.
150. 175. 200. 225… What’s after this? 4 x 100. Another bunny; another ride on the strugglebus.
Bring it back.
250. 275. 300… It’s simple. It’s not easy, but it’s simple. No bunny-wrangling required. I notice the bunnies. I may even smile at the bunnies and I may even follow them a few steps, but then I come back.
It’s all about coming back—back to being outrageously present.
What does focus mean to you?