I read the following quote in a fiction book some time ago:

“You see, focus can be a dangerous thing. Your view of the world narrows. You grow obsessed. Blinded. You see everything in terms of your obsession and nothing else. You cannot accept defeat. You cannot understand why everyone else does not share your passion. Don’t get me wrong. Concentration and focus are good and necessary, but when they slide unchecked they can distort your perspective. In the ultimate pursuit of knowledge you can easily become ignorant.”   “Miracle Cure” by Harlan Coben

Contrast that with a bumper sticker I once saw that simply said “THIMK”.

Somewhere in between these two extremes is our “happy spot” and we have to determine that zone. Coben’s statement brings to my mind those extreme individuals that can think of nothing other than whatever has consumed them. Workaholics, for example. I once had a boss that traveled to Washington DC almost every week. His return flight had a stop in Nashville and from Nashville he would call his assistant to schedule a staff meeting when he got into the office- usually 3:00 or 4:00 PM on a Friday afternoon. While the rest of us were celebrating the last workday of the week, he would quietly say, “Yes, only two more workdays until Monday” and he was SERIOUS! You could drive by the office almost any time and see his car parked at the door. That was not my happy spot, so a couple of us started leaving early on Friday before the phone call came to announce the meeting.

On the other hand some of us just don’t pay attention to what we are doing; our work products are deficient with misspelled words or poor grammar and we don’t seem to care. In the work environment, this is an unnecessary expense because someone has to do the task again.

These examples reflect the way we live our lives. Some of us are too focused and “narrow minded”, consumed by something and everything we do is through the lens of our obsession. And some of us breeze through life without giving a serious thought to anything, being tossed about aimlessly by whatever the day brings our way. There is a better way; a happy medium. But it requires work to overcome either of these ways we have chosen to live.

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