How to Use Small Circles to Create Focus

“The secret of change is to focus all your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” Dan Millman

Create focus by working in small circles.

Create focus when facing challenges:

#1. Draw a big circle.

Inside the circle, list all the challenges you face, every one that comes to mind. Don’t leave one concern outside the circle. Take all the time you need. If you’re circle isn’t big enough, draw a bigger circle and use smaller letters.

#2. List related issues.

Study the contents of your big circle. What challenges are related to each other? On a clean sheet of paper, group related challenges together. Cross out items in the big circle when you move them to a list of related challenges.

When you complete a list of related items, circle it. Now create the next list of related items. Continue until all the items are crossed out in the big circle and all related challenges are in their own smaller circle.

#3. Reflect.

Circle the most important item in each small circle.

#4. Narrow focus.

Choose one item in one circle to do something about. Write a behavior-based action you will take today to make progress with that challenge. What will you do?

“Today, I will (behavior) in order to make progress on (challenge).

#5. Record progress.

At the end of the day record your progress.

#6. Narrow again.

At the end of the day, look over your small circles and write down the one challenge you will take up tomorrow.

Write your behavior sentence.

#7. Repeat this exercise once a day.

Use circles when solving problems:

There’s a difference between problems and challenges. Make a list of all the problems you face. Use the above exercise to narrow your approach.

Create focus by working in small circles.

How do you narrow focus?


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