This line from the 2010 remake of The Karate Kid (“Your focus needs more focus”) has been spinning about my head lately, as I went through another round of reducing my active projects.
Great things come through focus. Demonic focus, as Tom Peters calls it.
But focus doesn’t mean 18 hours of work every day. It means concentrating on one and only one thing at a time.
Now, I’d be the last person to suggest that you should only do one thing forever. I love accomplishing many different creative projects over time.
But I’ve found that I need to be able to put aside all projects but one, and focus on the next deliverable, and concentrate on that until it’s done. Then move on to something else.
And this doesn’t mean that I spend every waking hour working on that one project. I’ll also read, and watch movies, and work in the garden, and play RPGs on Google Wave. I’ll still very much take care of the little things.
The big things take focus.