For the better part of the last six months I've felt scattered.
... not unproductive, just pulled in multiple directions.
At first, I thought it was the result of having traveled for nine months last year.
That my 'on the go' life, while providing immaculate experiences...
... had detracted from finding a deeper level of fulfillment from my creative process.
I thought I needed to dive back into an incredibly structured routine.
Up at 5a everyday, dialed in to a T, and ruthlessly cutting all distractions (pleasure).
When I saw the most growth in my life (during the pandemic), this was my routine.
I thought, "I need to recreate the circumstances in which I grew exponentially."
... and while I was correct in my thinking, I was incorrect in what actually moved the needle.
I thought it was my routine, and yes, it did play a large part... but it wasn't the primary driver.
In fact, the primary driver was a monomaniacal focus on a singular goal (at the time it was a business).
After I experienced some monetary success with that business - I decided to go wide, instead of deep.
I picked up clients in different verticals and expanded my reach, leading to scattered focus and energy.
We often see these big names on social media and how they have their hand in so many pots.
Yet we fail to recognize the infrastructure they have built within each vertical before they pivot elsewhere.
If we can do one thing with 100% focus, or five things with 20% focus, which do you feel will produce a better result?
If the goal is to produce the most of a desirable outcome... why then do we spread ourselves thin?
In a recent episode of the Modern Wisdom podcast with Chris Williamson, he interviewed University of Nevada, Las Vegas professor Michael Easter. In the episode he discussed what he calls the 'scarcity loop,' the system behind doom scrolling, gambling addictions, and dating apps.
Humans, and animals, get 'hooked' due to a three part process(evolutionarily tied back to scavenging for food).
Opportunity - The opportunity to get something of value.
Unpredictable Rewards - You know you'll get the thing of value, but you don't know how valuable it will be.
Quick Repeatability - You can repeat the game immediately (slots, scrolling, swiping, etc.)
*The average slot machine player will play roughly 16 games per minute (the same rate at which we blink.
This system is the psychological process that keeps you coming back from more, regardless of outcome.
When we take this psychological behavior and compare it to the behavior of those who we aspire to be like...
... it's very evident that they have found a way to remain consistent, and with a dedication to one thing.
Therefore, your ability to achieve 'success' is rooted in your ability remain focused...
... directing your energy, a finite resource, towards one thing for a long enough time horizon.
I realized this at the same time that I put my head down to focus on a singular project (C.R.) and removed all else.
The level of focus, fulfillment, and subconscious fortitude I feel presently has 10x'd, practically overnight.
If you feel scattered, see if this could be the case.
Additionally, because how you do one thing is how you do everything...
... try removing all apps, games, and interactions in which the scarcity loop is present.