“When it rains, look for rainbows. When it’s dark, look for stars.” — Oscar Wilde
This quote really emphasises where our point of focus, our fixation and our attention reside.
Did you know that we are bombarded by 2 million bits of information per second via our 5 senses?
It’s astonishing that we can actually digest, assimilate and absorb that much data.
However, based on our point of focus and our state of mind, we only capture 126 bits of that information at any one time.
We get what we focus on
Let’s play this out.
One morning, you roll out of bed feeling average for no reason. As you jump out of bed, you stub your toe, now cursing as you hop to the shower.
As you jump into your shower, you realise that the hot water is not working. You quickly jump back out, wondering why the hell there is no hot water. You now discover that the pilot light from your gas boiler is faulty but you get it working again.
Because you have to wait for the water to heat up again, you are now running late for work. As you are driving to work, you say to yourself, ‘it’s going to be one of those horrible days!’
Once you have pre-empted that you are going to have a ‘horrible day’, guess what your 126 bits for the day will be?
Your state of mind is EVERYTHING
The kind of day you are going to experience strongly depends on your point of focus and state of mind.
One of my mentors shared a story with me about Richard Branson and his point of focus at a conference in the 70s.
There were hundreds of entrepreneurs in an auditorium over a period of three days. The participants all heard the same information and received the same materials, messages, advice and tips from these highly successful businesses.
Out of all of the individuals present, it was just Mr Branson that did anything with the information he received.
Yes, he is an innate entrepreneur, he is a philanthropist and he has a curious mindset to learn. He was writing pages of information. And because he was inquisitive, interested and intrigued by what he could do with all of this information, he created an empire for himself.
Can you imagine what his point of focus was?
Each and every day he takes a chance, he pushes the boundaries and has fun while doing so.
He is all about creating memorable moments.
Starve your distraction and feed your focus
My trick in creating daily moments that count is to ask one very powerful question – ‘What have I learned or discovered from today?’
In doing so, I get the most fulfilment out of life and lower any periods of sadness and discomfort. I believe a problem is an opportunity to grow.
I make a point every day to see where my mindset is for the day. I am cognizant of what 126 bits of information I am bringing into my awareness.
I practise daily by listening to my words and my language, and I am mindful of what I invest my energy in.
I listen to my self-talk. Is it on a rampage of negativity? If so, I course correct my thinking. If I’m going in the wrong direction, I know that I am focusing on the wrong 126 bits. Consequently, I know that I need to put on my rose-coloured glasses to start focusing on all the opportunities available to me.
Another way to cultivate the power of attention is to purposefully create daily gongs and build on them. When I share this with others, they say, ‘oh, you are creating a list of dreams that make you excited about life.’
You may be wondering – what is a daily gong? The ancient gong originated in China during the period of 3000 BC – 1200 BC. It is said to be the oldest instrument, and it has a profound noise that is quite healing to the mind, body and soul.
So, how I create my daily gongs is with purposeful intention of what I want to focus on.
Once you have set an intention for your day, whatever the focus of attention is becomes more conspicuous.
Energy flows where attention goes
Focus equals emotions, fears, habits and beliefs.
Think about it. When you focus on something negative, you evoke negative emotions such as anger, sadness or frustration. Then you start with the self-criticism, self-sabotage, self-esteem…
As you can see, it can escalate to the point where you are drowning in fear.
Your thoughts fire your neurons, and neurons that fire together, wire together. With enough repetition and duplication, you end up creating a neurological loop. This is where you are then manifesting a habit.
Your inner critic is now on stage, constantly in your ear about how bad this is, how atrocious your life is and how you have a crummy relationship or a lousy job.
This, my dearest, is how you create beliefs. Your beliefs create your reality, and your reality is what you call life.
Don’t wait for that spiral to commence.
You can create your own memorable moments. Don’t do what others do, but do what feels right to you.
If the road ahead is empty, it’s because you are leading the way.