How to focus on what you actually want to achieve

Or my alternative title to this post….here’s a few F words to start the New Year off with a bang!

It’s not the words you may immediately think of, but it just so happens that most of my words below start with F!

Instead of making (and ultimately breaking) resolutions for the New Year, I’ve joined a growing tribe of people who choose a word for the year.

Drum roll please……

My word for the year is FOCUS

I thought long and hard about this and considered other words like balance, order, simplify…but I chose Focus as it lets me incorporate other areas in my life.

Focus is my word for 2018

Focus is my word for 2018

I’ve broken FOCUS down into a few major areas that I want to work on during 2018:

  • Family
  • Fitness and Health
  • Fun
  • Friendship
  • Blogging
  • Photography (almost an F word)

In relation to these areas I’m aiming to become more ‘in the moment’, I want to concentrate more, engage fully and stop scanning and skimming everything.

Do you find with all the connections we now have – the notifications, the emails, the binging of messages, the amount we read online – that it’s hard to give everything our full attention?  I know I’m more distracted these days, I have so many things going on in my head, that I often find myself just wanting to pull the cord and retreat from it all.

I need to slow down, breathe and focus.  Do one job at at a time and follow through. I also need to be happy with what I achieve and not beat myself up for taking the time to stop and smell the roses every now and again, or read a book, or whatever it is……

It’s funny, when you think of retirement you figure there’d be soooo many hours to get things done, but instead there’s less time available!  I don’t have enough hours in the day for everything I want to accomplish anymore.  When I was a young mother I thought time went slowly, but then before I knew it, my three daughters were all grown up and left home.  Different stages of life we go through!

Making the list:

As The Mathematician and I were driving home from our Christmas break on New Years Eve, (over 5 hours of driving by the way), I mentioned my delight in choosing some F words for the year ahead.  He promptly started throwing a few more at me – and can I just say, it was a long trip home!!!!

In his attempt to become a bit more involved in my blogging world he insisted that I write them down so that I could include them in my post, which of course I did, nearly making myself car sick along the way, I might add.

So a selection of his words were – funtastic, free, flibberty gibbet (sometimes we say flipperty gibbet) , festive, fabulous, faces, future, fatigued….and just a few others!!  Who was he thinking of when he said ‘flipperty gibbet’ do you think??

You get what you focus on, so focus on what you want.

So back to being focussed – you may now realise that I am easily distracted!

I haven’t actually planned to have a word of the year before, but Sue from Sizzling towards 60, is an advocate for this idea, rather than resolutions.  Throughout last year on her blog, she referred back to her word Simplify and gave regular updates on her progress.  I like the idea of focussing on one word and trying to improve the way I approach life.  The way I see it, it can’t hurt!

2017 – a year of New Horizons 

Back in December 2016, I wrote a post in response to a photo challenge prompt of New Horizons and so it seems I had inadvertently chosen my word for 2017!  It worked well too, as the year was one of new horizons for both of us with our first full year of retirement.

2018 – Bring it on

So there it is, I’ve stated my aim for the year.  I will attempt to focus my mind and improve my well being at the same time.  I won’t get distracted (very often) and I will try to improve my relationships with family, friends, my fitness levels, my photography skills and my blogging commitments.  At the same time I will still have FUN, because what’s life for if you can’t have FUN along the way?

So to answer my own question in the title of this post, How to focus on what you actually want to achieve, I have taken the first step.  I have written my word, I have given some thought to what I want to achieve and I will now make plans to achieve my aim of being more in the moment and making time to focus on what’s important.  You are holding me accountable by reading this post!

Over to you now dear readers – what word would you choose, should you wish to choose one at all, for the year ahead?  I’d love to know what you’re thinking!

Focus is the word for 2018

All the best for whatever you choose to do in 2018 – remember:

Don’t count the days, make the days count!

Deb xx

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  One thought on “How to focus on what you actually want to achieve

  1. January 2, 2018 at 9:57 pm

    Some good quotes and words here Debbie. A word for a year is an interesting and inspiring idea.

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 3, 2018 at 8:21 am

      Thanks Ruth, it sounds like a good idea so I thought I’d give it a go!! I love inspiring quotes and f words are fun too. Enjoy!!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. January 2, 2018 at 11:02 pm

    Focus has always been one of my favourite words Deb. Seems we’re in sync yet again. Wonderful post and I have a strong feeling that you’re going to have a very full and fabulous year. Enjoy it all. xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 3, 2018 at 8:19 am

      So in sync Miriam!! I’m happy to hear you share my focus and enjoyed my post. You wouldn’t believe some of the words the mathematician threw at me!! It’s going to be a good year for us all I hope.

      Liked by 1 person

      • January 3, 2018 at 8:42 am

        I think you’re right Deb. I have a feeling that 2018 will be a great year. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. January 3, 2018 at 12:34 am

    ‘Focus’ is a great word to start the year, and I wish you every success with your goals for 2018. I think my word for 2018 would have to be ‘health.’ I need to lose weight, get fit, and stress less to name but a few things, but overall be more mindful of my health.

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 3, 2018 at 8:18 am

      Great word Judy! I’m with you and am trying to lose weight as we speak. I also need to get to the doctors to check out my moles more regularly. All the best to you as you become more mindful of your health this year.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. January 3, 2018 at 3:49 am

    “Focus” is a great word to choose. I think mine will be “Disconnect,” as in try to disconnect more from my phone and social media. Given what I do, that could prove tricky, but I’ll try. I don’t get as much writing done when I’m online so much, and I need to put my focus there. Hmm, maybe my word should be “focus” too!

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 3, 2018 at 8:16 am

      I hear you Carrie! Disconnecting is not easy at all so good luck with that 😊 I think focus suits you!! All the best for 2018 and thanks for stopping by.

      Liked by 1 person

    January 3, 2018 at 6:49 am

    I’m looking FORWARD to continue to FOLLOW. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 3, 2018 at 7:13 am

      I like your use of ‘F’ words Donna, well done 😊


  6. January 3, 2018 at 8:59 am

    Great word choice, Deb! I can never seem to narrow my focus down to one word! Last year, my words were Wander and Linger, and I did pretty well. This year, I think my words will be Explore and Learn – Next year, I may very well steal “Focus!” Looking forward to following your efforts! ~ Lynn

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 3, 2018 at 9:02 am

      Thanks Lynn, I like your words and they could well apply to me too!! I love the idea of explore and learn as they can apply to everything we do 😊 you are more than welcome to steal focus next year. Lovely to connect with you and I look forward to following you and your words this year 😊


  7. January 3, 2018 at 11:54 am

    Excellent choice! Focus is a great F word. I think we can all benefit from a greater focus on what matters to us. Thanks Deb.

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 3, 2018 at 8:18 pm

      I agree with you it’s an awesome F word! I’ll be trying to focus on lots of things during the year, not sure how I’ll go but it’s worth a try 🙂


  8. leannelc
    January 4, 2018 at 7:30 pm

    I’m up to my fourth year of choosing a word Deb and I love that it gives you direction without guilt tripping you (like resolutions have a tendancy to do). I love your word – I had considered Sijmplify and Balance too but in the end I wanted something more gritty and I think my word Rise and your Focus both fit the bill. I look forward to seeing how all your F words come together as the year progresses 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 10, 2018 at 11:30 am

      Thanks Leanne, I love your word and your post explaining it. I’m looking forward to rising to challenges throughout the year and staying focussed.


  9. January 5, 2018 at 3:34 am

    Focus is such a great word! So much noise and choice out there so sometimes tough to achieve. For many of us, it takes alot of practice to achieve.
    I really like your other F words as well. Fun, friendship, family and fitness are priorities for me too!

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 5, 2018 at 9:53 am

      Thanks Marian, I hear you about all the noise and choice out there. I get too easily sidetracked so am harping I can become my word and focus!! I think my other F words are priorities for many of us. Take care😊


  10. January 5, 2018 at 1:47 pm

    I love the F alliterations, Deb! They are all perfect lifestyle words as well! Every year I try to focus on one thing but this year I’ve decided to widen my focus and allow more open-minded ideas to come my way! Here’s to your focused 2018!

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 5, 2018 at 5:26 pm

      That’s a great way to approach the new year Terri. Hope it works out well for you 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  11. January 5, 2018 at 4:51 pm

    I am curious as to what “flipperty gibbet” mean. I have never heard that phrase before, but it sounds like a fun word to say…

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 5, 2018 at 5:25 pm

      It’s actually flibberty gibbet Herlina but we often call it flipperty gibbet just for fun. It’s a whimsical, flighty or talkative person depending on where you live. We call someone a flibberty gibbet if they’re a bit quirky (and that can be me sometimes). Great question, thanks for asking it!


  12. January 6, 2018 at 6:34 am

    Love your word Deb and if I hadn’t chosen Thrive, Focus would have been another great one for me. Perhaps next year! I find that my mind gets so full of trivialities that it is difficult to really focus and get things done. I love all of your F areas that you want to focus on but most of all I love your last line ‘Don’t count the days, make the days count’ – this is so simple but hard to achieve. Thank you also for the mention I really appreciate it. Happy New Year my friend and thanks for linking up and sharing at #BloggersPitStop it is great to have you as a cohost!


    • January 6, 2018 at 2:19 pm

      I know exactly what you mean by the trivialities taking over Sue! I’m going well so far and it’s good to have that FOCUS there 🙂 Thanks for commenting and inspiring me in the first place!

      Liked by 1 person

      • January 10, 2018 at 8:48 am

        Well it makes me feel good to have inspired you but I also get inspiration from you! It’s a win win xx

        Liked by 1 person

  13. January 6, 2018 at 11:13 am

    You get what you focus on so focus on what you want, simple but profound. If that was all I read it would be enough to start my mind to buzzing. I have spent the last year recovering from two major surgeries so I have had a lot of time to think through what I want to focus on. I still need another year of focusing on gaining back my health but inbetween that I want to focus on some things I love, singing what I love best, southern gospel. Writing some more about our years serving in two third world countries, and of course deepening my walk with my Savior. Glad I stopped by, I have been challenged.

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 6, 2018 at 2:16 pm

      I hope you are feeling better soon and get to focus on what you want to do. All the best to you and thanks for stopping by!


  14. January 7, 2018 at 1:15 am

    A very thought provoking post Deb. I agree I do a fair amount of scanning and multi tasking. I think this would be very good for me as well to slow down and prioritize and be mindful of each thing I am doing. Wishing you a fabulous year ahead with all of your F words. xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 7, 2018 at 9:42 am

      The scanning and multi tasking has increased since I left work Sue, there just doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day for all I want to do so I tend to rush through everything! I’m aiming to slow down a bit and focus doing one thing at a time and also set limits on the time I spend on certain things. Enjoy your trip I’m with you in spirit!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. January 8, 2018 at 1:23 am

    I think this is great. Don’t count the days!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. January 8, 2018 at 3:04 am

    I appreciate your reminder to focus, Debbie. This will be a particularly relevant and appropriate post in February, when my 2018 focus may begin to look a little fuzzy!

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 9, 2018 at 9:07 am

      Yes I agree, it’s early days yet 🙂 Thanks for stopping by with a comment.


  17. January 8, 2018 at 12:11 pm

    Focus is a good word for 2018. Brings light to all the areas that you want to pay attention to. Of course, the Skipha will probably wonder why you didn’t make Blogging into Flogging to keep with the F sounds.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. January 9, 2018 at 8:55 am

    I love this choice! Hope you achieve this focus this year!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. January 11, 2018 at 12:21 am

    So glad I stopped to read this post. Like you, I catch myself skimming over things or doing one task while my mind is on another. I could have chosen Focus for my word as well, but I have already gone with another–one that chose me more than I chose it. Flow. I will be working on not forcing things so much, but being still, listening, and accepting what life has in store for me. Happy 2018!

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 11, 2018 at 2:06 pm

      I am so bad at just skimming over things but I am resolved to try harder this year. I love the word flow Christie, it works in with Focus really well AND is another F word to! I’m so pleased yous topped by to share your word and your reasons behind it too. All the best 🙂


  20. January 11, 2018 at 1:21 am

    Isn’t it amazing how the simplest advice is the best? Perfect case.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. January 11, 2018 at 3:21 am

    I love the word “focus” ! For me, 2017 was a year of great sadness – I had the death of my father followed by the deaths of 2 aunts & 4 family friends … but it was also a year of great highs – I ticked off many things that were on my bucket list. For 2018, I have many things lined up and I think my word would be BALANCE – to make the most of every second, whilst balancing family, keeping healthy, work & blog commitments, emphasis on the family side of things, 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 11, 2018 at 1:58 pm

      I nearly went with Balance too Linda, for much the same reasons as you outline. I’m sorry to hear 2017 was a year of sadness for you, but thankfully you had some highs too.
      Sincerely hoping 2018 is a much better year for you.


  22. January 11, 2018 at 5:16 am

    “Don’t count the days. Make the days count.” That’s fantastic advice which I shall implement as soon as I stop counting down the days until I can change jobs haha. Wonderful post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 11, 2018 at 1:54 pm

      Oh dear, I read about the possible change of jobs in your recent post 😦 I have that quote on a board in my kitchen and often look up at it and take a deep breath and read it again. It’s a great way to live, if you can 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  23. Chris
    January 11, 2018 at 5:54 am

    Great idea to focus on a word of the year rather than resolutions. 2017 was a rough one with a lot of F words, just the wrong ones. Maybe I’ll shoot for some better ones this year.. focus, friends, fun and definitely throw in some flibberty gibbet, maybe some frolicking and fantastic flippin fantasmagorical feelings just to cover all the bases.

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 11, 2018 at 1:51 pm

      That sounds great Chris, I love your F words, they sound like a real fun way to spend the year. Sorry to hear about your rough year by the way. All the best to you 🙂


  24. January 11, 2018 at 9:25 am

    I agree it is hard to stay focused, Deb, with devices ringing out to be looked at every minute of the day. I read a lot of blogs, too, and try to stay up on connections which makes for a lot of flittering around from one thing to another. There’s another F word – flittering. I haven’t chosen a word for this year but I think it’s a great idea. I’ll be interested to get your progress updates!

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 11, 2018 at 1:48 pm

      Flittering is a great word Molly, it’s what I do all the time it seems 🙂 What word would you choose if you decided to choose one do you think?

      Liked by 1 person

      • January 11, 2018 at 9:21 pm

        You made me think, so now I have a headache. LOL! Anyway, I think I would choose Faith. That is the word that helps me keep writing since I need faith to know I can do it. And faith helps me get out of bed every day. Notice I stuck with your theme of a word starting with F?

        Liked by 1 person

  25. January 11, 2018 at 10:09 am

    A fantastic group of F words!! Focus is definitely a difficult one to accomplish, I look forward to seeing how you do with it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 11, 2018 at 1:44 pm

      Thanks very much Christina – I’m hoping I can focus long enough to get through the year 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  26. January 11, 2018 at 12:52 pm

    I resolve to focus on fun this year! Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 11, 2018 at 1:43 pm

      Having fun is a great focus to have Monica – great to have you on board 🙂


  27. January 13, 2018 at 1:15 am

    I see you have a Miriam and another Marian (maybe me – ha!) but I don’t see my gravatar, which would show up since we are both WordPress users. Thanks for dropping by my blog today, Debbie!

    Liked by 1 person

    • January 13, 2018 at 9:08 am

      My pleasure Marian! I love finding new bloggers to read. By the way, I had to approve your comment before it would show up, so hopefully it’s there now 🙂


  28. January 18, 2018 at 2:18 am

    Nothing quite like a new year to hone your focus! I’m excited for 2018 as well, should be good.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. October 30, 2018 at 5:30 pm

    How have you gone this year Deb? I hope you have been able to find more focus across all areas of your life!

    Liked by 1 person

    • October 31, 2018 at 3:35 pm

      Hi Kirsty, this year has been a bit all over the shop due to sudden losses of my father and father in law, so I haven’t maintained the focus all too well. we also had a three month trip overseas and our first grandbaby born so it’s been a huge year !!I’m getting back on track now but the year is nearly over. I really wanted to post that one to remind me of where I was at the beginning of the year. Thanks so much for visiting and leaving me a comment, it’s much appreciated.


  30. Denyse Whelan
    October 31, 2018 at 5:52 pm

    Love your play on words…ph is almost f. I am actually considering, but don’t hold me to it, NOT having a word for next year. Radical but true. Thank you for linking up for #lifethisweek. Next week’s optional prompt is Share Your Snaps. Denyse

    Liked by 1 person

    • November 1, 2018 at 7:33 pm

      Wow, big call Denyse! Not having a word is radical indeed! Thanks for joining in!


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