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Taking action without distraction

AUDIO: How to Take Action Without Distraction

by Greg Yates | Breakthrough Leadership

Today’s post is about a simple formula that makes your actions count. 

We hear it every day, “Just Do It!” If you want to be successful, you must take action. No excuses. Just do something and then adjust. Do. Do. Do. Move forward!

Leadership requires us to act. As Christian Leaders, we have access to the most powerful plan with the most powerful resources.

Why is decision making so noisy? Why do I feel like Peter trying to walk on the water while the storm is everywhere?

I didn’t realize how distracted I was with my family until an outsider called the question.

Are You Present But Not Really “There?”

My son Terry had brought Lynnae home to meet the family. We were all on our best behavior to meet the “girlfriend”.  From my office, I heard everyone laughing in the family room. Eventually I found I was the brunt of the joke.  As they looked through family photo albums, suddenly Lynnae noticed that in every picture, I was on the phone.  Or I was in the background on the phone. Everyone is by the pool and I’m off to the side on the phone. I was there. I remember the events. But I was never really “there.” I was busy being busy. I was busy doing things. I was diluted by multi-tasking.

Taking Action was My Greatest Strength and My Greatest Weakness!

I’m sick and tired of writers pushing the “religion of action.” You’re a leader… of course you take action! Thirty years of leadership taught me how to do battle with distraction. It ultimately came down to three simple steps that channel my focus, eliminate distraction and create peace in stressful situations.

Take Action without Distraction! Use the A.S.K. Formula.

1. Ask the Right Questions – Asking the right questions destroys the diversion of urgency and channels your focus where you need it.

As leaders, most of our time is spent answering questions posed by others. Chasing after answers to the wrong questions doesn’t accomplish anything.

If you know your purpose, the path becomes clear in an instant.

2. Stop Firing and Take Aim – Too many resources are lost when action is taken in a firefight

Rapid-fire decision making is exciting and provides short term gratification, but it is extremely wasteful. You need to be the sniper with precision accuracy.

3. Know Yourself – Know who you are by knowing whose you are.

You are a Child of God. Distraction is warfare against your birthright

Urgency, compulsiveness and guilt create action but they don’t create a breakthrough.

You Can Have Peace. You Can Have Clarity. You Can Be Free From Distraction!

I always believed if I could get the ‘Urgent’ things off my desk, then I’d have clarity. That never happened. Urgency created a vacuum.  I thrashed in compulsive behavior like quicksand.  If I had a free moment, I felt guilty.  I was sure there was something I had forgotten.

I was sure there was something else I should be doing.

Sometimes taking less action accomplishes more.   

Let me be clear: Responding to Urgent demand with compulsive behavior, driven by guilt is a powerful endorphin release.  It feels good, but it’s not the road to Breakthrough.

The A.S.K. Formula is the path to your breakthrough! And as a child of God you have the greatest promise of Asking that has ever been given.

  • Ask and you shall receive
  • Seek and you shall find
  • Knock and the door shall be opened unto you.

God is not a god of distraction!

Add your comments to the conversation: What are some of the most common urgent leadership issues you face that make it difficult to focus on the important?

About Greg

Greg Yates has been a Chicago area businessman for over 30 years. He’s the author of the book, "Broken - How Being Broken Unlocked The Greatest Success of My Life". He has simultaneously owned 14 different businesses in a variety of industries; including real estate, manufacturing, payroll, and technology. Greg has also been an investor and a board member. He attended Olivet Nazarene University. He has a passion for flying. He’s had a pilot’s license for over 30 years and owned a variety of airplanes. Greg and his wife Vicki have been married over 37 years. They have a son, a daughter and seven grandchildren.

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