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Wow! It’s Wednesday! FIND YOUR FOCUS ZONE by Lucy Jo Palladino

What’s that you say? I haven’t done a self-help book in a while? Well, let’s see what we have in the old hopper. Oh, here’s one! Without further ado, my thoughts on FIND YOUR FOCUS ZONE by Lucy Jo Palladino

Why I Decided To Read It: After losing a few hours that I wasn’t able to account for at the end of each day for a week straight, I decided that it might behoove me to download a book on how to focus. This is basically my answer to every problem I’ve ever had: buy a book.

What It’s About: Palladino goes over different focus problems and then gives you advice to surmount them.

What I Loved: Well, the advice was pretty spot-on. I’m still not Spock-level focused yet, but I’ve incorporated a lot of her advice into my daily practice. See below.

What I Didn’t Like: I found it a bit hard to focus enough to read the book. Palladino might have a “know your audience” issue with her writing. Though her advice and anecdotes are compelling, her somewhat scientific explanations of why we have focus problems were repetitive and weighed the text down. It took me three days to read PURPLE COW and it took me three months to read this. Palladino and her editor might do well to assume that whoever is reading this has a) a really short attention span, and b) not a whole lot of time — and then write and/or edit accordingly.

Focus Lessons Learned:

When you find yourself procrastinating, ask yourself what else you could be doing. This is a simple notion, but it really works. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve found myself reading the newsfeed at Facebook, only to have a little voice ask me what else I could be doing. This gentle nudge puts me right back on track.

Manipulate your energy levels to suit the activity on your plate. For example, if you’re feeling tired but have a bunch of tedious work to do, move around, make yourself some coffee or tea and then go forward with your tedious activity. At the other end of the spectrum, if you’re too wired to sit down in front of a computer, read a book to calm your mind before jumping into your project. People ask me how I managed to get so much done while traveling on tour, and this is basically it. I drank coffee when my energy was flagging (up until 5pm) and I read for a half an hour after all the strum and drang of getting on the plane, then I worked.

Make a to do list, then a top three list. I tend to keep a very long to-do list, which then overwhelms me. Palladino suggests going ahead and making your To Do list, then picking your next three activities off of that list. A long to do list is intimidating. Choosing three things off that to do list at a time and then doing them is not only fun, but also totally manageable.

There are so many other great suggestions, but Palladino deserves your money, so I’ll stop there. Which brings me to…

To Whom Would I Recommend This Book: Everyone. If you’re not in fact, Spock, you could probably use some extra focus in your life, right?

featured image credit: Thomas Shahan