Attention is Almost as Limited as Time for Startups

Yesterday I was talking to one of the smartest entrepreneurs I know. We were talking about things that were going well and things that weren’t going well. For one particularly annoying thing that was out of our control I commented that we’d already wasted significant time and energy on it and that I didn’t want to throw more good time after wasted time. She immediately commented that our attention is almost as limited as our time.

People routinely comment that time is your most precious commodity. Well, attention is a close second to time as your most precious commodity. We know that there are only so many hours in the day. What we do with those hours is a choice. Attention is that choice.

The next time you feel overwhelmed, a lack of progress, or some other set back, do a review of your attention. Write down where you’ve been spending your time. Write down how many hours a day you were in the flow of quality thinking work. Write down how many hours a day you were in busy, choppy work. Where’s your attention?

What else? What do you think of attention being almost as limited as time for startups?

3 thoughts on “Attention is Almost as Limited as Time for Startups

    1. Great post, this is a good reminder why having a clear vision of where we are going is so important, a clear vision allows of us to set and focus our priorities in such a way, that we utilize our strengths and surround ourselves with people who’s strengths complement our weakness. In the book “Visioneering”, the author builds a case that a clear vision; motivates, directs, stirs up passion and ultimately gives purpose to an organization.
      The further down in an organization the vision is cast the more effective and focused the organization becomes.

  1. Hi David – great post. Although we’re not developing software, OpenView has implemented the agile methodology known as SCRUM across our organization. Since participating in weekly sprints and creating weekly stories (or goals), I’ve found my attention and ability to focus has great increased. What’s awesome is the relationship between attention and time. As my focus increases, I find I have more time throughout the day to accomplish goals that would have normally been put on the back burner.

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