In the Master Key System, Haanel encourages concentration and focus. First, we need to be clear about our goals, then concentrate with a laser focus in order to succeed.
Attention or concentration is probably; the most important essential in the development of mind culture. The possibilities of attention when properly directed are so startling that they would hardly appear credible to the uninitiated. The cultivation of attention is the distinguishing characteristic of every successful man or woman and is the very highest personal accomplishment which can be acquired.
“The power of attention can be more readily understood by comparing it with a magnifying glass in which the rays of sunlight are focused; they possess no particular strength as long as the glass is moved about and the rays directed from one place to another; but let the glass be held perfectly still and let the rays be focused on one spot for any length of time, the effect will become immediately apparent.”
So with the power of thought; let power be dissipated by scattering the thought from one object to another, and no result is apparent; but focus this power through attention or concentration on any single purpose for any length of time and nothing becomes impossible.Charles Haanel, Master Key System, Part 6:19-21
When looking for images for this blog post, I came across an acronym for FOCUS – Follow One Course Until Success. In Star Wars, Qui Gon Jinn tells his young padawan: “Your focus determines your reality.” In the Master Key Experience, Mark tells us that “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”
My friend Esther wrote a blog post about focus. Check it out here.
Lessons in Focus and Concentration
In The Greatest Salesman in the World Part Two, Og Mandino, as Hafid, teaches us to focus. In fact, the Seventh Vow of Success in that fine book is: “Always will I throw my whole self into the task at hand.” Here are some other quotes from that vow:
“It is those who concentrate on but one thing at a time who advance in this world.
Never again do I only lay my hands on my work when I should have committed my entire being.
I do whatever I am doing, henceforth, as if there were nothing else in the world of any importance.
What an immense power over life is the power of possessing direct aims.”
Now I know that when I pursue a worthy goal, steadily and persistently, with all the powers of my mind, I succeed.” Og Mandino, The Greatest Salesman in the World, Part Two, the End of the Story.
Concentration and Focus Require Goals
Here is my take on concentration and focus. Yes, it’s important to focus, to throw your whole self into the task at hand. But first, you MUST make sure that it is the right task! You need to have clearly defined goals. That’s why it is so important to have a clear DMP (Definite Major Purpose).
When you consider a task, ask yourself: “Is this bringing me closer to my DMP?” If not, maybe you shouldn’t be doing it. I am not suggesting that everything you do must be directed towards your goals, after all, leisure time is important as well. But when you are working on something that is supposed to further your DMP, think about it.
Yes, concentration and focus are very important. Remember: first decide what you want, hold that clear mental focus, allow yourself time and space without distractions, then put your whole self into the task at hand.