If you can control your attention, you can control your life. Learn how to strengthen your mental focus and how leadership coaching can help you improve.
Overview: The ability to focus is a leadership competency in its own right. To improve your focus, eliminate distractions, set your priorities, drop multitasking, and stop trying to please people. Consider leadership coaching. A seasoned coach can guide and support you on your path to becoming a better leader.
How to Remain Focused as a New Business Leader
Staying focused as a young leader can be challenging. Work can feel overwhelming, and the urge to do too much can lead to burnout. Leadership coaching can help you understand why your focus is important and how you can improve it.
Leaders who try to act like they are employees lose sight of the fact that the ability to maintain focus is an essential leadership competency. The CEO is not a higher-level employee who has to do more of the same. Top-level leaders have to accomplish different objectives that call for a different approach.
Here’s what you can do to improve your focus and leadership.
Improving Your Mental Focus
Mustering focus has never been more difficult than now in the age of mobile devices, perpetual connectedness, and online messaging alerts. We like to think that we can pay attention to several things, but we clearly can’t.
Fortunately, you can teach your brain to focus better. The more you exercise focusing, the better you get at it.
Working on your mental focus is easier than you might think once you adopt a structured approach.
- Eliminate distractions. In today’s information-rich world, the potential distractions are many. Click-bait headlines, instant messaging notifications, scams, legitimate emails, colorful ads, and live chit-chat compete for our limited attention spans. You have the power to turn off many of these communication channels. Take that step and do it. Carve out some time in your day when you are alone, free of all imaginable distractions.
- Assess the current state of your mental focus. Be honest with yourself. How much time do you spend in a day accomplishing something productive? Do you daydream often?
- Forget about multitasking. Once you set out to do something, forget about everything else. Instead of trying to accomplish your tasks at the same time, line them up and tackle them one by one.
- Focus on the present. Many of us are worriers. We tend to live in the future, forgetting about being present right now. Others live in the past, endlessly ruminating on their mistakes. Focus requires your attention now. Be present, and stop wasting mental energy on things you cannot control.
- Take a break now and then. As a CEO, you have plenty on your plate at all times. Learn to relax even when you have things to do. By taking a break, you rest your mind and refresh your ability to focus.
Determining Your Priorities
When you are in a top leadership position, it is not easy to get your priorities right. It may seem like every task on your laundry list screams for immediate attention. Leadership coaching experts have solutions for this conundrum.
- Set a couple of things as your most important tasks at the start of your day. Only work on tasks you alone can handle.
- Delegate everything else to competent reports. If you have competent employees you trust, don’t hesitate to delegate important and urgent tasks.
- Delay non-important tasks without remorse. Revisit them later or hand them off to your reports.
Prioritize your priorities.
Giving Up Pleasing People
New leaders may feel tempted to please their reports. We like it when others like us. Leadership development professionals will tell you that a CEO cannot afford to be a people-pleaser. CEOs can be friendly and engaging without sacrificing their time to please others.
Escaping the Trap of Micromanagement
The tiny details of the everyday workings of an organization are outside the scope of leadership. A top-level executive inspires, provides a purpose, and sets a direction. Leaders do not obsess over details.
There is a difference between using technology and allowing it to use you. The purpose of technology is to help us be more productive. For many of us, however, technology has become an addiction, providing the equivalent of chewing gum to our brains through constant stimulation.
Taking Advantage of Leadership Coaching
Reach out and hire a CEO coaching expert to help you focus. Leadership development professionals understand the challenges you face and can provide you with custom solutions.
Leadership development holds the answer to many of the challenges you face as a leader. A CEO coach has seen and experienced the problems you are facing. Expert input and feedback can help you build and fine-tune your leadership competencies, turning you into a better version of yourself.
To learn more about how you can join the IL Movement as a coach, or how you can benefit from bringing IL Solutions to your organization, contact us today.