Wednesday, December 02, 2009

It's All About Focus

'I tell my clients, 'you can do anything you want, you just can't do everything you want.'"
--overheard from a speaker at a recent
Cleveland Coach Federation gathering. Isn't that the problem with so many smart people--that they try to do too much, thus spreading themselves too thin? Okay, enough about what we think. What think you?

21 Comments:

At 9:16 AM, Anonymous Donna said...

Smart people don't spread themselves too thin - ambitious people do. There's a difference.

 
At 9:41 AM, Blogger Joe Lowry said...

I agree with Donna. Smart people know their limits. (although ambitious people are always pushing them).

 
At 9:53 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Interesting distinction, and one I wouldn't have thought of, since there's so much overlap between the two (smart people are often ambitious, and ambitious folks are often smart) that I tend to think of them as being almost synonymous.

 
At 12:24 PM, Blogger Kim said...

I thought my spouse and I "invented" that saying as we constantly prioritize our lives. We always said, "we could do anything we wanted, just not everything".

To me it's about being able to decide what truly matters in life. It is also about reigning in greed to a degree. I consider myself very ambitious, yet I accept that there are so many hours in a day, how do I want to spend them?

The only thing in life we cannot make more of or buy is time. I think your statement speaks more to the ability to spend our time wisely.

 
At 12:26 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

I think working moms have always understood this on a visceral level. It's the opposite of the old '70s slogan about having it all.

 
At 2:03 PM, Blogger Kass said...

At this stage in my life, as my house and my life fill up with 'things,' I definitely have to arrange time and matter. One day I looked at all the gee gaw I've accumulated, and I thought of the one big project I want to finish before I die, and I started getting rid of everything that didn't have to do with that project. Of course, this may be my way of stalling the project, but at least I'm slowly getting a neater house.

 
At 2:06 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

That's a nice way of thinking about it. We do tend to accumulate too much stuff throughout life, so at a certain point, decumulation makes sense also.

 
At 4:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

this comment is just so "boss". It reminds me of the most beautiful girl i ever saw in Time magazine years ago at a spaghetti party.

 
At 4:54 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

That made me laugh. Talk about an ancient inside joke among old friends...

 
At 6:51 PM, Blogger LIVE TO EAT said...

For me it's knowing my limitations, something I learned many years ago and feel is paramount for a well rounded life.

 
At 4:30 AM, Blogger Jim Murdoch said...

My ethos is: Something is better than nothing in fact anything is better than nothing. I'd make a rotten coach.

 
At 8:16 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Thanks for adding your two cents, fellas. They're much appreciated.

 
At 12:01 PM, Blogger Art Durkee said...

I'd be the anti-coach, probably. I'd be the Coyote trickster being contrary and a rule-breaker. I doubt I could survive a coach's convention without offending at least a few people. Or Zen blowing their minds. far too tempting.

And at the same time, the wisdom of knowing one's limits is really important. I've phrased it for myself, for several years: "I can do anything I put my mind to, and I don't have enough time to do everything I want to do." Time is what I always limited by; I suffer from the vice of impatience. At the same time, ahem, I'm artistically rather productive, as I do my best to use my limited time and resources efficiently. "Work smarter, not harder," is another saying one might hear from a coach.

I'm still learning how to rest, the most challenging for me of the Wolf Rules for Life.

 
At 12:09 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Suffice to say that you'd certainly be a coaching challenge, Art. But an interesting one, no doubt. On the other hand, I think of coaching in the broadest possible sense, and in that regard, we actually do some reciprocal coaching with each other right here, helping each other think through how and what we do, and how to do it better. That's really all it is.

 
At 2:44 PM, Blogger LIVE TO EAT said...

I came to find Art here on your site, John. He is a very talented and artistic man, in many ways, and an inspiration.

I return here, John, because you are an inspiration as well.

Gentlemen, I thank you both.

 
At 2:50 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

How kind of you, Michael. That thing you (don't) see is me blushing, virtually.

 
At 7:44 PM, Blogger Art Durkee said...

Aw shucks. *blushing* :)

 
At 5:05 AM, Blogger Mariana Soffer said...

I think problems aarise when people lose perspective of who they are and what they can do.

 
At 9:59 AM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

Know thyself first, as the wise person says. Thanks for stopping by, Mariana.

 
At 2:16 PM, Blogger Raman said...

Spreading myself too thin ? I believe yes. Many a times I get myself into more than I can handle and I start to get irritated with less time and so much to do.

Its very elating to get involved in many things but then reality dawns that there only as much one can do.

 
At 2:18 PM, Blogger John Ettorre said...

That sounds pretty familiar to me, Raman. Thanks for joining the conversation. I believe it's your first time commenting, so a double welcome is in order.

 

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