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Coming back from sabbatical and starting the next hundred episodes of the seanwes podcast, we decided to kick things off with a 4-part series on leveling up your business.
Whether you’re just starting out or you have an established business, the concepts in next 4 episodes will give you the clarity to make sure you’re prioritizing the right things and doing work that will make a difference.
To kick off the series, we start with the most important thing: focus. Chances are, the majority of your effort is being spent doing things that are not making a real difference in your business. Whether you’re taking your freelance full time, hiring your first (or 10th) employee, focus is crucial.
Getting focus starts with defining your goals. We talk about finding the most important thing to be focusing on, and what things to say no to in order to maximize your focus so you can grow sustainable assets that will bring continual returns.
Highlights, Takeaways, Quick Wins
- Saying no to something doesn’t mean you’re saying no to it forever.
- You need to focus on one thing at a time.
- You will not grow anything into a sustainable asset if you have split focus.
- You don’t need more time, you need more focused time.
- You can get more done in 90 minutes of focused time than most people do in a whole eight hour day.
- It’s very possible to be known for different things, it’s just not possible by doing them all at once.
- If you’re working in a place where you’re constantly interrupted, you’re not working.
- Give yourself permission to try something.
- Don’t take on too much for the level you’re at— take on what you can and let time do the rest for you.
- 05:57 Ben: When I think about things that distract me and keep me from being able to focus, I think about extra projects and fun little ideas. I’m constantly being struck with inspiration to do some artistic thing, and if I don’t relegate those activities to some time that’s specifically geared toward doing those things, I’m in danger of letting that creep into my regular work and being consumed by it mentally. When those ideas come, it helps me a lot to say, “I’ll get to that.” It has a time and place somewhere else, so I don’t have to obsess over it right now and I can focus on my work.
- 07:13 Sean: It feels that way and that’s probably why a lot of people are juggling a lot of things. Doing too many things at once is probably the main stealer of your focus. I’m introducing a new era to this show and I’m calling it the “Fiery Sean” era—we’re leveling up.
- 09:21 I’m not going to hold back anymore. I used to be less confident in what I was saying; now I’m just going to say it. I’m finding my voice now, 200 episodes in, and I’m not going to hold it back anymore. I know that people don’t agree with everything I say, and that’s fine. Before, that used to hold me back and I was reserved because of that. I thought, “People might disagree with some of this, so I shouldn’t say it with so much conviction.” Now I know that it’s okay for me to have conviction and say things with emphasis and gusto. It’s going to resonate more with people. The people the message is for are going to get a lot more out of it than if I was timid about my message because I’m fearing that someone won’t agree with it.
- 10:42 People are trying to multitask and do all the things because they’re afraid that if they say no to something now, they’re saying no to it forever. You cannot build sustainable assets if you’re doing a bunch of things at once. I like the bonfire on the beach example. Imagine you have little fire pits around you that represent your passions or the things you want to do. You’re going around and trying to stoke the embers to keep the fires alive so they don’t die out completely, but as a result, you’re not building sustainable bonfires that can keep roaring without your attention. Focus all of your attention on one of those fire pits, build it up to a bonfire, and then you have that asset. You can go on to the next fire pit, build up the next fire, and eventually you have all of these bonfires, your assets, that will continue roaring without constant attention from you. So many people are too worried about keeping all the embers hot, jumping from one fire pit to the next, and they always stay tiny.
- 12:08 Ben: If you get one fire going really well, you can take the fire from that one and bring it over to the other ones. It’s not that you have one bonfire and you have to start the next one from scratch. Having built one gives you momentum into the next thing. That’s how it works when you’re focusing, building businesses, and building assets.
- 12:44 You network with people, you build relationships, you meet people that fit within that specific brand that might be peripheral to something else you can bring up later. You aren’t doing one thing at the expense of the others.
- 13:05 Sean: I didn’t bring up the bonfires because of Fiery Sean; that’s just a coincidence. Imagine there’s a sign next to each bonfire saying what each one signifies. Someone looks at all your fire pits with all their different names: photography, illustration, woodworking, music, and guitar—they’re going to wonder what you’re about. They don’t know how to process you. They don’t know why they should care. We’re so worried that ignoring those other fire pits for now means ignoring them forever. We think that because one thing isn’t related to something else, we’ll never get a chance to go to that thing. Eventually, you can go to it. Even though that bonfire signifies something, like Ben said, you can take some of that fire and go to the next thing. You’re going to learn things.
- 14:20 Say you want to be a guitar player, and that’s your full-time deal. You want to make money from that, maybe teach lessons, and that’s your thing. You build that up, focus on that exclusively. Then you want to move on to illustration, and you think that there’s no overlap there. There is, indirectly. Maybe you learned how to grow a business, do your own accounting, marketing, and teaching, and you can bring those to the next thing. You want to make a video to promote your services in illustration? You play guitar; you can make your own music track to your video. There are all these things that apply to the next thing, and you don’t realize how they apply until you get there.
- 15:13 It’s scary narrowing down and focusing on one thing, saying no to other things, because you feel like you’re giving them up forever. Maybe you’re focusing on lots of things and trying to grow all of them, trying to run multiple sites, be a partner to multiple people in their businesses, trying to have multiple newsletters on different sites, or trying to do multiple shows. I get emails from people saying, “Sean, I’m trying to do all these different projects. I’m doing one business on my own, I’ve got a little bit of freelance, I was kind of doing a day job, but I ramped it down to part time. I have a business partner over in India who is mostly running that business, but I’m involved. How do I juggle all of this?” You don’t! You can’t juggle all of those things.
- 16:15 You need to focus on one thing at a time. Grow one site at a time, one newsletter at a time, one blog at a time, if you want people to care, to get what you’re about, and you want to grow this into a sustainable asset.
- 16:38 Ben: We talked about the fear of leaving one thing behind forever, but I want to speak to another fear that is in play here. You might be afraid that you are not capable of building a fire. You might be afraid that you aren’t going to be able to get the bonfire going, so if you just focused on one thing and you couldn’t get the fire going for that one thing, then you’ve invested all your time, energy, and focus into that. There’s nothing else you’re building that you can look to. That’s the mentality people bring to this. They think, “I need to diversify my time investment. If I can get at least one of these fires going really well, then I’ll be okay.” They’re not sure whether or not they’re going to be able to.
- 17:37 They’re afraid that the fire won’t get going, so they play their chips on multiple tables. When you focus and that first bonfire does go up, one of the things you take with you is the knowledge and confidence that you know how to build a fire. A lot of people don’t have that yet. They come to that first bonfire not knowing whether or not they can. That’s a fear that’s common for people, and it’s why they tend to spread themselves out over several things.
- 18:18 Sean: If we break down the building a fire analogy, there’s different levels to it: starting the fire, getting it going, growing it, and then scaling it to a bonfire. There are a lot of people who have fires, but not bonfires. They can’t get it bigger than a fire because, as soon as it’s going a little bit, they focus on something else. Scaling it to a bonfire is a transferable skill. You know how to scale something to a bonfire. Having one bonfire is an asset to you. It can be a foundation, something that is sustainable that you can overlap to something else from, which we’ll talk more about in part two.
- 19:14 When you’re constantly switching your focus, you’re not giving people enough time to care about what you’re doing. I’m assuming you want to grow an audience here, sell products, or build your business. If you’re switching around, you’re not giving people enough time to care. That’s why I say to show up every day for two years. That’s why I still believe this show is only in the beginning stages. We’ve shown up for two years, but people are just now tuning in.
- 20:01 Because we’re relentless, because we’re consistent, and we keep putting stuff out, people start to notice and care, just like I started to care about a show with 100 episodes. I listened through the whole backlog and then they said, “We’re done. We’re moving on to something else.” You just got to the point where people are caring. You can’t get to that point if you’re constantly switching around.
- 20:28 Ben: Say I’m a person who has never built a bonfire before, and I don’t know whether or not I can do it. What would you say to that person? They’re agreeing with you, but they’re thinking, “I know I need to focus on one thing, but I feel like if I don’t spread myself out, if I don’t at least give some other things a chance, how can you be so certain that I’ll accomplish building a single bonfire?”
- 20:56 Sean: Stay tuned and listen to all four parts of this series we’re doing. We’re going to get to it a little more in the next episode. You have to give yourself permission to explore. If you don’t know what the thing is, if you can do it, if you’d like to do it, or if you would enjoy the process of it, give yourself permission to enter into an exploratory phase. That’s where the overlap comes in. You need something covering your bills during that time. You aren’t trying to get money, but you’re just doing this thing.
- 21:39 I’m going to talk more in the next episode about scheduling time for that, doing it consistently, practicing it, and finding out if you enjoy the process vs. just the idea. The main thing is, give yourself a chance. If you enjoy the process and you like it, you can begin the overlapping. I believe you, the listener, has it in you to build a bonfire, but me telling you isn’t going to do anything. It’s going to have to be you doing it, you trying it, you building it until there is a bonfire. There is no, “I can’t build a bonfire,” just keep going. If something’s not working, try something else. You’ll get there.
- 22:26 I got another email last week from someone saying, “I need more time in my day. There’s not enough time to go to work, be with family, read, work out, etc.” Here’s the thing. You don’t need more time. We all have the same 24 hours in a day, and we can’t do anything about that. Time is an abstract concept; there’s just the now. The sun comes up at some point and it goes down at another point; it doesn’t really matter.
- 23:08 So many people split their time and their attention, whether it’s multiple pursuits or multiple things coming at them constantly, distractions, or interruptions. Your calendar last week, very likely, was not 100% scheduled, yet I will bet you that your time was 100% filled. You likely didn’t find yourself sitting around going, “I think I’ll just sit here.” You filled the time with something. That means that your time was spent doing things that weren’t important enough to be on your own calendar, which means that you were tending to someone else’s agenda for your life. Maybe those were choices you made or choices you allowed someone to make for you. You didn’t put up a fight. You fell back to a default, whether that’s Netflix or other time fillers that you have.
- 24:10 You spend 100% of your time even though there were not things on your calendar. You found things to do or you let other people find things for you. It’s focused time that people are short on. You can get more done in 90 minutes of focused time than most people do in a whole eight hour day. All they’re doing is getting interrupted and distracted. This is why I believe in the sabbatical concept so much, Small Scale Sabbaticals. We took a whole week off last week. I still have tinges of doubt, because I’m paying for my employees, all seven of us, to take time off and do nothing related to making me money—at least not directly. Hopefully, indirectly, they are getting ideas to apply to the business, but I’m paying for that time. I believe so strongly in effective focused work time that I believe the time they’re on is effective enough to make it okay for them to take that time off.
- 25:12 So many people are wasting time, getting interrupted constantly. Workers are interrupted once every 10.5 minutes on average, according to studies. That’t not the worst part. Studies also show that it takes, on average, 23 minutes to regain focus. A seven minute interruption is costing you half an hour in actual focused work time, which is terrible.
- 26:00 Ben: They never find focus because they’re being interrupted twice as frequently as the time they need to regain focus. That’s awful.
- 26:12 Sean: It’s possible they could find a tiny bit, because it’s averaged out. You might have a couple of quick interruptions and then a little burst. For the most part, most people do not actually have focused time in a work day. You think you’re getting work done, you’re pecking away, and you’re kind of getting stuff done, but if you look back or journal, that brings clarity. What did I actually do today? What did I actually accomplish today? A lot of people really aren’t working. That seven minute interruption is costing you half an hour in actual focused time. Most people are getting constantly interrupted, they have to regain that focus, and it’s taking them 23 minutes to regain focus.
- 27:03 You’re not actually working, you’re constantly trying to get to a focused level where you could get work done, which is bad. You have to protect the focus.
- 27:17 Ben: The dangerous thing is that you can get things done that way, and you can even meet expectations based on the typical output of somebody in your position, and it feels like accomplishment. This isn’t to demean the things people are getting done, but if you look objectively at how you spend your time you will likely find that you’re capable of more than you’re doing, were those distractions and interruptions to be removed. If I sacrifice my workout or my reading time, these things, though unrelated to my work, help me focus more in my work. It’s similar to what Sean was saying about the sabbatical; it doesn’t directly contribute to work, but it helps you be more efficient and focused when you work.
- 28:32 I want to make allowances for those kinds of things, but on the other side of that, you can defend things so much under the guise of how they help you be more focused in your work that it’s actually becoming detrimental to your work. There are things you should sacrifice. You can talk yourself mentally into this, too, saying things like, “If I don’t have my double-shot cappuccino, the rest of my day is shot.”
- 29:16 You need to be objective with yourself about what those things are. Don’t defend something arbitrarily, but really ask yourself, “Does this really help me be more focused? Or is this just a comfort I’m defending because I don’t want to give it up?”
- 29:35 Sean: Sarah asks, “What’s your routine for eliminating possibilities of interruptions? What are the things you do before you dive in to uninterrupted work?” I’ve talked about two things:
- Minimizing distractions
- Eliminating the possibility of interruptions
- 30:06 Minimizing distractions is a “now” thing. Wherever you are presently, if a distraction comes in, you want to minimize that. Subdue those distractions. There are simple tricks like using airplane mode on your phone, do not disturb, turn off notifications, don’t get push notifications of emails, use one window and one tab on your browser. Things like that. You can get more hardcore, to where you restrict your internet for a certain amount of time for only certain apps. You could get really aggressive if you wanted to. I like to use the whiteboard trick. A distraction comes up, something I know I’m not supposed to focused on, and I will write it on the whiteboard. If I I want to get on Twitter, I write it on the whiteboard. Facebook? Write it on the whiteboard. YouTube? Write it on the whiteboard. Check my analytics? White it on the whiteboard.
- 31:06 Then, if that comes back to me, like maybe I want to check Twitter, I say, “Nope! It’s on the whiteboard.” That works for me. I’ve got it out of my head and I’ve written it down; this is a thing I’m not going to do. That’s minimizing distractions that happen to you in the now and getting rid of them. The other part is eliminating the possibility of interruptions. It’s not just saying, “Don’t interrupt me, I’m busy,” but stopping even the possibility of interruptions. It’s a preventative measure, so you’re doing whatever it takes ahead of time to create this safe space. It could be preparation of your environment or it could be communication with the people around you, whether that’s family, coworkers, a boss, or employees.
- 32:05 It’s creating this safe space ahead of time. You’re preventing the possibility of interruptions.This allows you to enter a state where you know without a doubt that no interruption will come. That’s going to bring about a peace of mind, a clarity, and a focus that’s unlike any other.
- 32:31 Ben: It’s hard to find that when you have kids and you’re working from home, but it’s possible.
- 32:39 Sean: You have to communicate with someone. In that case, you would have to have someone who is responsible. That’s really the only way. You can really have peace of mind saying, “Alright kids, Dad’s going to be in the other room,” because part of you is still worrying what could happen while you’re not watching. You have to completely give that up and know that someone trusted is handling that and preventing them from interrupting you. That little doubt in the back of your mind is enough to kill your focus.
- 33:23 Ben: There are some intellectual distractions we go to, but understanding what’s going on emotionally when we seek out distractions is also helpful. You might be working on something and you get to a spot where you start to feel uncomfortable, and maybe you have to work a little harder and it requires more mental energy because it’s not something that you really enjoy doing, or maybe it’s something you don’t know the answer to and you have to do some research. It all comes back to discomfort. One of the things we do naturally when we feel uncomfortable, whether we’re afraid, sad, or frustrated, is to seek something to offset that and bring us back to a normal level.
- 34:29 Often, the reason why social media is so popular is because you get a shot of dopamine when you see someone re-tweeting something you said or liking something you said. It’s just enough to offset that a little bit. If you think about how small that payoff is, it creates an addiction to it, and it becomes more than laziness. You’re using those things as a coping mechanism for the discomfort you feel. It’s important to understand that, because there are better things you can comfort yourself with. You can withhold that and say, “After this work session, it’s going to be uncomfortable and hard, so I’m going to reward myself with something.” You defer that reward. Understanding that helps me when I feel myself running into that resistance and discomfort. I understand what’s going on.
- 36:02 Sean: I break distractions down into two parts, minimizing distractions and eliminating the possibility of interruptions. Minimizing distractions is a present thing and eliminating possibilities is something you do ahead of time to prevent it. I have to hone in on the possibility of interruptions. You have to know that there is no chance to be interrupted, because that’s going to give you that clarity and focus.
- 36:35 Pick something—just start something. Pick the worst thing of all of your options and go all out on it. Your struggle is not picking the right thing. Your struggle is doing something, focusing on it, and putting all of your energy into it. If you’re sitting there and you’re not sure which thing to pick, just try it. Just do it. Give yourself permission to enter that exploratory phase and just try something. Put your energy into that, schedule it, and do it regularly. Continue to work at that thing, put your energy into it, and find out if it is what you want to do and if it is the next thing you want to overlap to or level up to. You have to pick something and just start doing it. Focus on it. You’ve given yourself too many options.
- 37:34 The freedom you have by giving yourself so many options is paralyzing. You have no clarity, and that’s stealing your focus. You have to pick one thing and go all out on it. If it’s the wrong thing, cool, that’s progress. Go on to the next thing. You’re moving forward. I drew this sketch note, a circle with arrows pointing out in all directions from it. We feel like we have this 360 degree circle of possibilities and options, all these things we could do. You could go any route, so you’re just in the middle spinning around. You don’t know which way is the right way, so you’re just standing in place looking all around. You could go any direction.
- 38:25 I prefer to picture a starting line with a bunch of arrows that are all pointing forward. Anything you do is progress forward. Like with the bonfire, you’re going to learn things that apply to the next thing you do, to the future things you do. The most difficult thing is starting. You have to pick something and go.
- 38:59 It’s the What → Why → Whats concept that I’ve talked about (Related: tv56 What → Why → Whats). You want people to care about your “why,” you want people to care about you, but the “why,” what you’re about, your mission and your values, are intangible. They’re like a mist, and people can’t grasp that mist. They need something tangible that can pull them in, something they can grasp and hold onto. That’s the initial “what,” the one specific thing you’re curating that people can get, which brings them on board with your “why.” From that “why,” you can go on to additional “whats.” I talk about curating and focusing, and people say, “But look at this guy! I know so-and-so who’s successful, and look at all the things he does.”
- 39:48 There’s no lie there. It is absolutely true that you can be successful with many things you are good at and many things you’re known for. That’s very possible, but the way people got there wasn’t by doing all those things simultaneously, but by going all in on something and then overlapping to the next thing, building assets, building bonfires. Then you have an empire of bonfires, and people actually know you for all those different things. It’s possible to be known for different things, it’s just not possible by doing them all at once.
- 40:28 Ben: There’s this thing I experience with clients that I’m noticing pretty consistently. One of the roles I play is to be the person in the room who says, “Okay, this is what we’re going to do and the order we’re going to do it in,” because I see so much hesitancy. There could be three or four people in the room, and each of them at any time could say, “Here’s what we’re going to do,” and pave the way forward, but they’re so afraid of being the one who makes that decision, the one the consequences of that decision rests upon. They don’t want to be wrong. It’s so similar to this quandary you find yourself in when you have these different options; you just don’t want to be wrong.
- 41:13 I think about the two selves thing, and I wonder if there’s something you can do to separate yourself. There’s one version of you that’s the client, unsure what to do, but whatever the professional tells you to do next is what you’re going to do. The professional you gets to be the one who’s completely disconnected, regardless of whether you make the right choice for the client, the client is going to pay you, because they’re compensating you for your time and your expertise. You’re off the hook. Be frank with yourself about it. I hope that helps somebody, because creating that separation sets me free from feeling the weight of that decision. The reality is that it may work or it may not, even if it was the right thing at the right time. If it was the wrong thing at the wrong time, something could work out and it could end up being a huge success. You never know unless you play and you can’t play unless you make a decision.
- 42:44 On the way here, I was thinking about focal points. We’re talking about focusing, but in order to focus, you have to know what you’re focusing on. What if having a focal point is a bigger deal than what you’re focusing on? For example, if I have a handful of things I’m doing in service of a single goal, if my focal point is trying to be in those details and I’m shifting my focal point from one thing to another, I can see how that could get really disorienting and it would be difficult to feel like you’re making progress. Zoom out and acknowledge the fact that they’re all serving the same purpose and make that your focal point. I’ve done this recently; it feels like I’m doing different things, but they’re all in service of a common goal I have.
- 43:59 Changing my focal point was really important. Because of that focal point, I had a clearer picture of what my next steps were going to be and I knew how to prioritize things. Maybe you hear this and you’re thinking, “That’s me, I’ve got all these different things I’m doing,” but maybe all those things you’re doing are in service of a greater goal. Nobody can multitask; you can only do one thing at a time. If you change your focal point and you say, “This is the thing I’m trying to accomplish,” once you get that sharply into focus, it’s easier to understand how to prioritize those other things: which one to focus on right now, tomorrow, and three months from now.
- 44:59 Sean: It’s more clear why you’re doing those things and where they are getting you.
- 46:33 Sarah says, “How much is too much? How do I find the balance between not showing up enough to be relevant, and taking on too much for the level I’m at?” You won’t show up enough to be relevant in the beginning. There’s no showing up enough to be relevant if it’s only been a few days, weeks, or months. The time factor is something you can’t fight. If you post something every hour, 24 hours, for a week, that’s still not enough. It’s not just a showing up thing, it’s also a time thing. In the first two years, that’s where the showing up pays off. Two years is the period where you just have to show up. You can’t fight the time factor; it’s always going to be there. Consistency and time will come to your aid in the two years you show up. You might see some results, but you won’t always see results in that time.
- 47:48 Ben: There are people out there saying, “Two years! That’s such a long time.” We say that it goes by fast. We used to see companies who would advertise how long they have been in business, “Serving since 1852.” The longevity of the business was really important. In a way, we’re in an exciting time now, because the mentality people have for what constitutes longevity has really shortened. Two years seems like a long time, and in the minds of the consumer, if you’ve been at something for two years, that’s enough to qualify you for having the longevity and commitment they attribute to companies who have been doing it for 50 years.
- 48:52 Sean: For a TV show that’s been airing for two years, you say, “It’s a new show.” If it’s been doing it for two episodes, you wonder if it will even finish the season before the network kicks it off. Two years? You’re just getting started.
- 49:09 Ben: A show that’s been around for two years will have the same longevity attributed to it as a show that’s been around for ten years. People understand that there’s a difference between two years and ten years, but they feel the same level of commitment from those two shows.
- 49:24 Sean: It takes a lot to show up consistently for that amount of time. Look at Casey Neistat, who went from 400,000 subscribers in March, doing a daily vlog, till now in the middle of September, having about 1.2 million subscribers. That’s not a lot of time. He’s literally showing up every day, but look what it’s gotten him. That’s enough for him.
- 50:01 Ben: It’s a tremendous gift that you get to have that kind of influence on your audience after only two years.
- 50:09 Sean: Sarah’s talking about taking on too much for the level she’s at. Veronica asks, “How do you focus enough on one thing if you haven’t yet figured out what pursuit is worthy of quitting your day job for?” That’s where I was saying that you should give yourself permission to enter a period of exploration. You don’t have to build an audience or make money; this is just time to do it and try it. Schedule some regular time, and it has to be regular, scheduled and consistent. Set aside that time to be able to pursue this thing. It’s easy to say you like the idea of something, but you need to find out if you like the act of it.
- 51:16 Ben: You probably look up to people who are content creators. You’ve done some research, and you see what kind of output other people have. You may have unrealistic expectations of yourself. This goes back to Sarah’s question. If you find that you’re wanting to commit to so many things but feel so overwhelmed that you rarely get to any of them, you’ve committed to too much. Work at it from the other direction. Commit to a single thing, whether it’s a blog, a podcast, or a video, and start with that. Get consistent. That’s the bonfire on a smaller scale. You’re building a little miniature bonfire with this one thing, and if you can really get that going and you have momentum and consistency with it, you can start to add those other things in one by one and see how they fit.
- 52:23 The time you spend doing that first thing is going to matter. If you’re showing up consistently and providing value, people are going to notice. That’s credited toward your audience building, even though it’s one single thing. If you’re asking how many things is too many things, you’re doing it wrong, especially in the beginning. Once you get going and you understand what you’re capable of putting out, that’s another nuance.
Saying no to something doesn’t mean you’re saying no to it forever.
Doing Too Many Things at Once
Focusing on making one thing strong and healthy gives you momentum for other things.
You will not grow anything into a sustainable asset if you have split focus.
You’re Not Short on Time
You don’t need more time, you need more focused time.
Eliminate the Possibility of Interruptions
If you’re working in a place where you’re constantly interrupted, you’re not working.
There are some things you should let go of so you have the time you need to get work done.
There are also things you should defend because they help you to be more focused.
Find a healthy way to bring your emotions back to a normal level that’s not going to take away from your work time.
Pick One Thing & Just Do It
If you want to build an audience, you have to focus so that other people know what you’re about.
When you focus on a uniting goal, you feel a lot more focus and energy in the little things.
Time & Consistency
Don’t take on too much for the level you’re at—take on what you can and let time do the rest for you.