The Confessions Of An Attention Whore: On Focus And Goals
I have lost it!
Focus that is… I have lost it and I am beginning to think I have never had it. This is a post on hard life lessons on finding this lost trait.
I am one of those kids.
The kids they told from way too early in life that they are really good at many things and they are talented and they have a whole lot of potential.
I never understood them, I never believed them. I did not see it!
I DID NOT SEE IT!!
I knew I was clever, intelligent even.
Instead of growing it (not so clever huh!!) I used my smarts to somewhat show off albeit not on purpose. I remember things really really well so writing notes, even in primary school, seemed not so important to me (proud much)… Ujinga!! (stupidity). That was not a wise move!
Either way, it would have worked, it really would have but it flopped!
I mean I did pass. But that is just it. I just passed primary school. Enough to go to a good high school. Hail, I even went there by merit. I passed and was admitted. What could anyone tell me?… pride comes before a fall…
I could have done better, I really could.
My mum tried to tell me. But who was I to listen. Mimi ni kichwa ngumu, mkora ata (I am stubborn, it could be criminal even). See, it got into my head that I had passed without much effort anyway. Do not get it twisted, I did regret not getting the best I could. I mean, I really really could have done better. But truth be told, I DID NOT put my best foot forward AT ALL. I just listened to my teachers and practised math. I was fairly good at it -I am not so sure that I am- so that really did come without as much effort.
The Life Lesson..
I must admit this though, in retrospect, I do not think I regretted this lack of full focus and mediocre grades enough. And in the spirit of full disclosure, I have carried this half baked attitude around all my life. I start something, with full force then i get distracted and start concentrating on the distractions. And these things are usually sweet AF!! So in I go!
I had a problem. My focus and staying power were wanting. And, to be honest, they really really still are. I take up a task, start of like a star really then poof! Distractions galore. Distractions are good. They really are. I can explain. Distractions are worthwhile because they come in to reinforce your attention to a goal and to enable to choose the goal over and over again. That’s why they exist.
I missed this little lesson continuously, so the universe, ever thorough and thoughtful teacher, has been throwing that lesson at me all my life. Literally. High school, going all the way to Uganda to study, coming back to Kenya to do a degree in BCom at Strathmore and studying BBIT instead, being a good programmer, a Microsoft ambassador even and then poof!!… not programming much to struggling to finish that degree, to starting a second degree in Law at Riara with all the force available and then looking at the possibility of not getting the best I would be able to get.
I have had quite a good number of opportunities but I have failed miserably at them.
I know, these qualifications are not everything, I can rationalise this statement. (Intelligent person, remember!) Rationalising things is a talent all on its own. But its an insult especially to myself because I can achieve that first class so easily if i actually did focus.
Finding my focus…
I have failed myself!!
I need to find my focus. And to be disciplined enough to actually keep at it. To learn to get away from distractions. I need to choose me authentically, genuinely over and over. To choose things and actions that reflect my true nature and self and not this “uncontrollable” uncaring person I have become. This per
son who pleases peripherals and not me or the people who matter!
And in as much as there is a battalion of people ready to tell me not to be so hard on myself, at this point, we need to apply the requisite amount of force and pressure. We need to admit when we are wrong and be hard on ourselves. We in this case being me, myself and I. So that is exactly what we shall do. And my dear friends, please let me be hard on myself. It is time!!
Lets be real, it is time for me to be me!