Are you focusing on the right thing?

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We all know that whatever we focus on it saps our energy. So that sparks the question:

“Do you focus on the right things?”

Often I catch myself creating these NEGA-stories (NEGAtive-stories). These are the worst-case scenario stories I play through my head to prepare myself just in case they come true. I am not sure why I am doing this, but it started when I was a kid at school and has been a part of my life ever since.

I always thought that I am a bit strange in that field, but over the years, I found out that I am not alone with this. I’ve met so many people that go through the same process every day; it’s scary actually.

In a way, it’s the opposite of falling in love, where you see all the positive things.

If you become good at your NEGA-stories, this process actually might make you feel better. You feel prepared. You’ve gone through all the options you can think of and made yourself come out right every time. Even so, some of the scenarios you go through are impossible.

Time to change the polarity

The problem with this NEGA-story process is that you spend a lot of time concentrating on the wrong things. This process is quite exhausting and doesn’t leave you much energy for all the great things.

I became aware of this about 20 years ago when I started listening to Tony Robbins and his ideas about focus. I realised then that I was doing something wrong, that I could be so much better if I could concentrate on the things I want to do.

And around that time, I started to work with different forms of meditation. I enjoyed it while I was meditating, but it didn’t impact my NEGA-story process. So I decided instead of changing my behaviour to find a way to use it to focus on the right thing. I was already very good at it, so it seemed to be a good thing to try out.

Start with an action plan

First, I created some ground rules. I wanted to make sure that each story ends with a positive outcome for everyone involved. I also decided on several points that should never happen in my stories. Things like, nobody should ever be harmed or feel bad, myself included.

I also create and update a list of all the goals I want to focus on and try to integrate one or more into any of the stories. In the beginning, it was quite tricky, but after a few months, it started to be fun.

Have you ever had a fight with your partner where in your head you were already planning the break-up but then changed the outcome to fall in love again with the same person? A ground-breaking and life-changing experience, I promise you!

If you are like me – a genuinely professional internal storyteller – then don’t try to shut yourself up. Use that power instead to create and influence the real world by focusing on the really important things. Because you are in control.

So let me ask again:

Are you focusing on the right thing?

John Di Stefano

An entrepreneur at heart and founder of the Entrepreneur Academy in Brussels, Belgium. He is teaching and supporting entrepreneurs in the skills every entrepreneur needs to create a better life for themselves and the people around them.

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