Focus …

Browsing the bookstore today, I came across an interesting selection called “The Startup Playbook” by David Kidder and Reid Hoffman. It’s a collection of success stories from prominent startups today including AOL, Flickr and LinkedIn. Reading the Kindle sample later (I use the physical bookstore just to see what’s new. They’re way overpriced.) I found this interesting quote:

“How confidently do you value your focus, your most passionate efforts (not simply your passion), your time? If you value them highly, quit every activity that steals time without contributing to the important goals that grow and enrich your life. The physical and intellectual time recovered will be re-purposed into your greatest gifts and efforts, leading to dramatic personal and economic returns.”

That one quote pretty much sold me on the book. It echoes an idea that hit me over the head sometime ago which I’ve kept in mind and shared ever since even if I haven’t been able to fully practice it. The old adage says that time is money but time is not money; it’s infinitely more precious. I’ve wasted money over the years on things I didn’t need and that knowledge doesn’t hurt nearly as much as knowing the time I’ve wasted and can never replace. Money in the bank can be counted but tomorrow is never guaranteed.

Even over the last few months, I’ve let myself be snagged by a lot of time-wasters from Facebook to resentments I’ve held onto and I’m finally realizing the price that I’m paying for that baggage in terms of progress and self-confidence. It’s easy to whine about not being motivated but motivation only comes from exercising a little self-control and making ourselves take that first step and then the next.

So I’ve found another book for the reading list once I get some of the old stuff cleared off my desk.

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