Weekly Leadership Lifter

January 2, 2023

Happy New Year everyone! Every new year I like to pray and ask God for one word that will be my driving force for that year. Author Jon Gordon created a challenge around this concept and even wrote a book titled, "One Word that can Change Your Life." You’re supposed to let this word set the tone for your goals, habits, and ambitions for the coming year. It helps you to overcome the noise and brings extra purpose to the new year.

Jon Gordon says it impacts every dimension of our life—the mental, physical, emotional, relational, spiritual, and financial. Some of my words in the past have been breakthrough, restoration, and abundance. The word God gave me for 2023 is FOCUS.

"We’ve got to remember that we get whatever we focus on in life. If we keep focusing on what we don’t want we’ll have more of it."
— Tony Robbins

"You become what you give your attention to." — Epictetus

Never has there been a time in history when there is so much noise and so much distraction. 24-hour news, social media, and work at home schedules are just some of things that can keep us from bringing our best work to the marketplace and our best attention to our homes.

Cal Newport, author of "Deep Work" writes about Adam Weiss, a chemistry PhD student at the University of Chicago. "Although I had been productive early in my graduate career, my long hours and hard work were no longer translating into success in the laboratory" Weiss said. After taking some time to examine how his routines and processes had changed, he discovered the problem: his phone. He said his study time, his time of greatest concentration and creativity were being taken over by digital distractions. Needless to say, he removed his phone and his laptop and saw his productivity improve.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard leaders say, "If I just had more time," or "I just need to be better at managing my time." Let me tell you again, like I did in the Leadership Lifter from October 10 of last year, the problem you have isn’t "time management," your problem is "focus management." Tim Grover, Kobe Bryant’s trainer said, "Kobe’s results were not a result of managing his time, they came from relentlessly focusing on the results he wanted." Legendary Leaders realize their focus and attention are valuable. They constantly examine their environment and routines looking to eliminate distractions. They surround themselves with things that help to strengthen their focus. They understand that where they focus is where they get results.

Here are a few suggestions from Cal Newport on how to eliminate distraction and focus your attention and concentration to create new value and improve your skills:

  1. Have a Distraction Free Zone — have a room, a chair, a place that is free of people and digital distractions.
  2. Make spending time in your DFZ a habit — start small, but incorporate this time into your daily routine.
  3. During this time concentrate only on what matters — utilize this moment to work on your long term goals.
  4. Track your progress — find ways and tools to measure your progress.

"Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you." - Proverbs 4:25

Praying 2023 will be a year of renewed focus and great growth for you!

Recommended Book:
Deep Work by Cal Newport


If this Leadership Lifter has helped you, please pass it on!

God is For You!
Pastor Blunt

COTR Marketplace Ministries is a ministry for those in the marketplace and those interested in starting a business. Lifelong learners, entrepreneurs, businessmen, and businesswomen, meet to grow in their leadership and skills. This is a great place to network, build relationships and exchange ideas!

Join us on January 14, 2023 at 5pm in the main campus lobby. We will have guest speaker, acclaimed author, Dr. Eli Jones. He is is an academic administrator, entrepreneur, professor, business leader, and author of "Run Toward Your Goliaths". His faith journey will inspire you to face your insurmountable challenges.

Dinner and childcare will be provided. Purchase your tickets online for just $12 or $15 at the door.