I watched a video on leadership and teamwork, and it got me thinking about where most of my time every day is spent. In the video, there was a feature on a concept Dr. Stephen R. Covey shared in his book, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” referencing “the Circle of Influence” and “the Circle of Concern.”

The Circle of Concern encompasses a wide range of concerns we have no control over: the weather, the economy, the political views of others, wars, and other items. The Circle of Influence is the area that we have control over: your attitude, what you read, skills you learn, what you buy, and where you work.

Whatever circle you focus on is the circle that grows, and the other circle shrinks. If yyou spend most of your day focusing on things you have no control over, your Circle of Concern will grow and your Circle of Influence will shrink.

The good news is, the more time you focus on the things you do have control over, the more your Circle of Influence will grow and your Circle of Concern will shrink.

Do you start off every week with a written plan on what you want to accomplish? Be proactive: Take responsibility for your life and your business. Instead of reacting to or worrying about things you have little control over, focus your time and energy on things you can control. All the problems, challenges, and opportunities you will have fall into these two areas: Circle of Concern (no control) and Circle of Influence (control). When you are faced with a challenge, ask yourself, in which circle does this fall? This is where you can start target practice. Aim for the key areas mentioned earlier: your attitude, what you read, skills you learn, what you buy, and where you work.

  1. Start with being aware of where you spend your time and energy.
  2. Make a list of four priorities you want to accomplish this week. If No. 1 is the most important, then get to work on it. Don’t stop until it is completed, even if that is the only tasks that gets completed.
  3. Track your activity for a week in 30-minute increments to see where your time is spent.
  4. Adjust as needed to make the best use of your time.

Remember: Focus your time on your Circle of Influence, and you will start to see your business and your life take a positive turn.

Publication date: 10/22/2018

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