Insights from the book Focal Point by Brian Tracy 2002
A system to simplify your life and double your productivity.
Brian Tracy does an excellent job in this book of laying out some basic principles to help you with your life and productivity. I would recommend reading the book. There are a few things in the book that are redundant, he tends to repeat himself in different chapters usually in slightly different terms but even that can be helpful as it might trigger your mind a different word might trigger your mind to grasp the concept that you might’ve missed earlier.
Here is a basic overview of the underlying principles of the whole book:
1. Do more of certain things
2. Do less certain things
3. Stop doing things
4. Start doing things
Those four points are simplistic but they are profound, in fact if you just dwelt on those four points with nothing else you could have a tremendous impact on your life concerning how you manage your time and your productivity.
Brian stresses the importance of knowing where you are going, having a clarity about what you want to accomplish, and having a clear picture of who you want to be in five years.
What is the ideal person you want to be?
- Once you get that clear picture he has some questions encourages you to ask.
- What is the best way to get there, to become that person?
- What knowledge do I need?
- What skills do I need?
- What habits do I need to develop?
- What habits do I need to lose?Taking the time to get still and quiet and answering those questions will give you great clarity as to how to make the progress you want to make.
These questions help us to begin to think clearly and even to change the way we think. Brian says,” our thoughts are the causes of the results in our lives. ” And if we change how we think we can change your life’s, you become what you think about most of the time.
So Brian encourages us to develop the habit of optimistic thinking, it comes with practice. We begin to develop that by thinking about the future, what our vision is, and thinking about our goals.
One very important point he makes not only in this book and that in his other books and teaching is that we need to accept personal responsibility. We will not make the changes we need to make in our lives until we accept that we are responsible for who we are and where we are. There needs to be no complaining and no criticizing, no criticizing of others and no criticizing of ourselves.
When we accept personal responsibility we begin to recognize that our choices are what makes a difference in our life. It is not circumstances forge our lives but it’s the choices we make on how we respond to the circumstances that forms our character.
Here are some other sayings of Brian, phrases of wisdom are worth meditating on.
What you focus on grows. What you track improves. What you observe improves. In other words pay attention.
You can define your habits and then your habits can define you. We are the sum of our habits whether they be good habits or bad habits.
Brian has another question that’s really important ask for us ourselves. Knowing what I know now is there anything I am doing that I never would have started, is there anything I bought that I would not have bought, is there any relationship I’m in that I would not be in, knowing what I know now?
If your answer is yes is questions his encouragement is for you to break off the thing that you started as soon as possible even if it means you lose money. He says to get out of a relationship as peacefully as possible but as soon as possible. If you’re a business owner and you’ve hired someone that you realized you should not of hired that you need to break that relationship as soon as possible.
Back to the concept of clarity about who you want to be in five years, what you want to do. Brian’s encouragement is to say no to any activities that are not in line with your highest priorities, values, vision.
What is my outcome, what result in my wanting to accomplish?
Am I going about it the best way possible?
Brian cautions us to beware of assumptions because often our assumptions can be in error. He says to have to three and even four options at hand in case your assumptions are wrong. In other words assume that your assumptions are in error and have several backup plans.
I need to wrap this up for now, be watching for more insights from Brian Tracy’s book Focal point.
Comment below on what’s the most important insight you gained from this blog post?