How To Avoid Shiny Objects And Stay Focused

How To Stay Focused

Have you ever heard of a popular term “Shiny Objects Syndrome”? Simply put, it means the tendency to chase something new rather than stay focused and finish what you’re currently working on. It can be anything – a new business idea, goal or educational course. In our modern world full of distractions it’s very challenging to stay focused but it’s crucial for your success.

You can say that you experience the shiny objects syndrome if you:

  • have a list of ideas but nothing gets finished;
  • constantly start working on new goals but never see them through to the end;
  • jump from one internet course to another, drawn by the huge claims of each course;
  • frequently jump from one goal to the next rather than sticking with what you’re doing to the end.

You may ask: “Well, what’s so bad in it? It’s multitasking and working on a few things simultaneously”. The biggest evil of this kind of approach is a distraction. When you’re pursuing a new shiny object, you can unintentionally abandon important tasks you already have on your list. If you don’t figure out how to stay focused, it most likely will delay your progress.

What happens when you get distracted? You never get things done because you rather explore something new than complete your current tasks. This leads to you spending a huge amount of time on new things which usually are just tinsel instead of building something solid. Moreover, you become Jack of all trades. You never master any of them because you don’t get deep knowledge in any area switching to the next shiny object.

Many entrepreneurs who are just starting their business may experience this kind of temptation. If they see that the idea they’re working on doesn’t bring expected results, they leave it and start something new. However, this approach isn’t very effective and doesn’t bring them closer to their goals. So, what can you do to stay focused and stop chasing shiny objects?

1. New Doesn’t Mean Better

When all you do is following every new tool and idea, you waste your time chasing trends rather than getting things done. Just because a new product was launched on the market doesn’t mean that it’s automatically better. Same with your ideas, there is no guarantee that your new idea will be more successful than the one you’re currently working on. Therefore, it’s better to stay focused on something you’ve already put some effort into than jump onto a new idea.

2. Learn To See Past The Hype Of Shiny Objects

New products, services, ideas appear in our modern world constantly so you can feel the need to jump in and follow what others are doing. But see past the hype and ignore shiny objects that appear regularly. While people may brag about how great a product/service is, what’s good for others may not be good for you.

3. Is That Really What You Need?

Before switching to a new shiny object, assess whether it helps you get closer to your goal. Don’t follow what others are doing just because it’s the hottest trend now. Ask yourself, is this what I really need? Will it help you to reach your long-term goals? Only do something if it’s what you need and it adds value to your work and life.

4. Differentiate Between Shiny Objects And Real Opportunities

Shiny objects are things that look good and exciting but are really distractions at the end of the day. Real opportunities make a real impact on your work. For example, tools that dramatically improve your workflow, engage with customers, automate some processes. It’s important to differentiate between them ignoring shiny objects but taking advantage of new opportunities.

Both in business and in life, it’s crucial to stay focused on important things and don’t chase shiny objects. If you’re are easily switching to a new idea without finishing something you were working on, use the tips from this post to fight this harmful habit. Moreover, check out our tips on how to stay productive and get more things done.

Do you easily get distracted from your goals? Is it challenging for you to stay focused on one idea? Share in the comments!


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