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Is FOCUS the most important word? Ever.

I am running out of time to write.

It’s a battle…..battle…..battlefield. Ha…..hahahaha……

The competition is huge!

It’s summer and the desire to be outside is dominating my attention. The weekends are packed with activity which is fantastic but it has taken a lot of my attention away from writing. The Olympics are on, right now, and are, as expected, also a distraction. Golf is always on my mind. The cottage is also on my mind and vacationing is taking some serious attention away from my other personal pursuits.

Like this blog.

This is my first full summer in the blogging world but it just seems so lame to even consider the pull of summer activity as a new thing to distract me from my work.

What am I? Fifteen years old?

I have been working for 27 years in the Architecture and Design industry and have seen the ebb and flow of business as the seasons pass many, many times. I know full well the whole world slows down over the summer months especially over August. Just today we were having a conversation in the office about how there seems like there is so little going on around town. Even the rush hour traffic is almost non-existent.

Where the heck is everyone?

Not here.

All that dominates my thinking is planning for the next long weekend. I love my business and I love my work but this desire to live outside of that is very, very strong right now. Just like it is every year.

Have I lost focus?

A little while ago I read a book called The Accidental Creative and a big part of that book was about focus. It demonstrates concrete examples of what we do to detract ourselves from concentration and shows us the ways to avoid those detractors. Some of the detractors that come to mind are procrastination and lack of planning; two things that contribute to the potential to distract you from keeping the irons hot (damn, another golfing reference). Both need focus to avoid.

The thing is that I am focussed but maybe not on the things that further my career right now. Personal pursuits instead of career pursuits.

Am I doomed?

Focus was also a big part of the social media conference I attended last week called SocialMix 2012. For those in the blogging world I don’t have to explain what this is and for those that are not, well, let’s suffice it to say these conferences are like (tongue firmly planted in cheek) the Comic-Con of Social Media. Not really, but kind of. There are celebrities mingling with their fans, autographs being signed and general revelry in the crowd. There is also a lot of serious learning to be had, experiences to be shared and a lot of promo for those with something to sell.

Fun all around.

Back to focus my friend.

Focus drives how we produce and at what level; on and off the course. Focus was the central theme of my last blog post; The Art of the Mental Game in reference to golf which, to those who do play the game, takes a ton of focus.

So, why is it so hard to focus in the summer months on things other than fun, personal and family time?

Maybe the question doesn’t really matter.

I think it’s more about what matters to you at the time. As fluid and malleable as it is, time is really on our side. The conscious choice that most people make to slow down is not a bad one. It’s necessary. Like the cycle of life, right?

Or am I just trying to convince myself that I am not just being lazy?

No. Not at all and I am being quite serious about this.

The race to be first is huge.

It drives business and after listening to Gary Vaynerchuk speak at 2 million expletive driven miles an hour about his coming of age story I am convinced he hasn’t recognized a season in many, many years. I have never, in my life, experienced a more driven individual.


It must take scads of focus to be as diligent as this guy is with his pursuit of affluence. He was full of fire, his colourful language was peppered with humour, pause and serious amounts of arm waving energy. There was no way to ignore this guy’s confidence. In himself and everything he does.

If you’re not careful some might rub off on you.

If you were there or you have ever heard him speak you know what I mean and if you weren’t or you have no idea who I am talking about check out this video for just a taste of his personality.

Hustle is the most important word. Ever. – Gary Vaynerchuk

So, this is my question is to you all (and to myself).

How driven are you?

Do you have that much fire in your belly that the seasons don’t matter? Do you only think about your next move? Or is some real down time valuable?

A slow groove.

Some reflection.

Or is hustle the most important word?






About this Author: Ralph Dopping (199 Posts)

A quirky sense-o-humour coupled with an indelible sense of stylish sarcasm makes it difficult to take the world too seriously doesn't it? My faves: fun, passion and hard work. I work here everyday: