It came to me in a dream: “focus”

It was such a vivid dream. I am racing through a mall at lunch time carrying lots of packages when I see a colleague from another department in what appears to be an upscale salon. She is overseeing a video shoot featuring our CEO. (In my real world, every aspect of this is totally absurd. I hate shopping, usually work through lunch and our CEO will never be in a video shot in a salon!)

This colleague is doing something that is clearly my responsibility but there are too many people and obstacles between us for me to walk over. I have to take a huge detour through another section of the crowded mall but, no matter what I try, I can’t get back to the shoot.

At the same time, I’m trying call my boss so that she’s aware of what is happening. No amount of swiping the screen works. Suddenly, I’m outside. It’s winter. It’s snowing. I’m still carrying the packages, still trying to phone and now, there is an Olympic pool-sized pit of trampoline/bouncy mats that are a type sidewalk I have to cross.

It’s all quite serious. I’m being bounced around, trying to phone, trying to get back to the shoot where someone is doing my work. When I bounce out of the pit, I fall into the mud and have to pick myself up and all my belongings are caked in the boot-sucking mud.

I woke up  with one word in my mind: focus.

So that’s my word for 2014. It’s going to be tricky because I initially thought I’d apply a different leadership tip every week. Then I revised it because applying 52 different tips in a year (and building on them) might be too much. (I am getting wiser with the years.) I thought perhaps 24 best practices would be more reasonable (to give me a two week holiday). Now, applying the concept of focus, I’m going to pare that down further and determine the object of that focus.

I need to look into those metaphorical packages and eliminate or consolidate a few.

It’s going to be a challenge with competing work, family and volunteer commitments on top of wide-ranging interests – book club, maybe ski lessons,  blogging and exploring municipal politics in an election year. One thing is for certain, I will avoid carrying multiple packages while walking, bouncing and trying to call my boss.

What’s your word for 2014?

P.S. I wish there was a photo of this dream that I could post. That trampoline pit was crazy!

Published by Dominique O'Rourke

Public Affairs professional, City Councillor, MA Leadership graduate, problem solver and lifelong learner.

6 thoughts on “It came to me in a dream: “focus”

  1. Hey Dominique. Nice post. I can visualize you climbing out of the trampoline pit only to fall into the mud pit. Isn’t it amazing how the human brain works?

    I just completed my annual personal plan today, so I am feeling focused at the moment and life is good. If you do not recall my blog for this renewal ritual that keeps me sane and tells me what to stop doing, let me know, I will send you a link.

    The title reminded me of a post that I am going to use later this month, My title is Dreams Ain’t Goals. It is a bit of twist on the topic, but very much aligned with your post. Nice job as usual, Dominique

    1. Hello Bob,
      In the dream I am more “bounced out” than climbing out. There was definitely little self control!

      I’d love the link to that blog post about an annual personal plan and look forward to your upcoming post.

      In a similar vein, I read an article by John Maxwell last year where he wrote that on Boxing Day every year he goes through every appointment in his day planner for that year and assesses every engagement to determine what he would do again, what he would trim and his greatest accomplishments. I like the retrospective nature of that and, it would certainly help the planning.

      Thank you for stopping in and Happy new year!

    1. Your word made me smile because I think I have to explore and prioritize before I can focus… or is that contradictory? All the best in your exploration! Please share what you are learning.
      Wishing you every success.

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