How to focus and gain clarity during uncertain times

We are facing unprecedented and uncertain times at this very moment and I would love to share with you two tools from my coaching toolkit to help you through. These tools will help you gain clarity and utilise your focus so you can navigate a new normal, and adjust to the ever-changing landscape of our world right now. Best of all, you can use these tools straight away and it's super quick too.


Tool 1: clarity

Brain Dump exercise

What you will need: two pieces of paper and a pen/pencil.

  •  Step 1: It’s time for a brain dump. You can do this right now. It’s super easy and you will gain clarity immediately.

    Grab yourself a piece of plain paper and a pen/pencil. Now, I would like you to make a list of everything that is on your mind that 'needs doing'/you would like to achieve in the next seven days. Take as much time as you need to compile this list - maybe even grab a cuppa or glass of wine whilst you’re at it.

    Write everything down on this list from household tasks to subscription renewals, bills to pay, invoices to send, workouts to do, meals to make for the week, shopping prep, sewing a button back on your shirt, self-care, appointments that need to be made and scheduled, birthdays, children’s homework tasks, gifts to buy, financial paperwork to work through, book-keeping and checking in on the parents etc. Have a brain dump and get all those thoughts that are spinning around in your head onto that piece of paper - voila! 
  • Step 2: Well done on getting your brain dump sorted. Now, it’s time to make one more list so, grab yourself another piece of paper.

    This second list will comprise of the items from your first brain dump list, but this time I want you to prioritise your brain dump tasks into urgency. I want you to prioritise by putting your most urgent tasks at the top of your list and the non-urgent tasks at the bottom of your list. Tick off the tasks from list one as you go along so you don’t have any duplicates. You can also ask yourself, 'Is this task time-sensitive and needs immediate attention?' and/or 'Can I push this task to the next week?'.

When you’ve completed both lists, take a deep breath in and out. Congratulations, you have taken control, gained clarity of your life and taken a step forward too. I hope you feel lighter and brighter knowing that everything has been listed and prioritised. You now know what you need to do this week and what task needs direct action to enable you to move in the right direction. Now, let's put this list to action. 

Tool 2 | focus  

The One Thing exercise

What you will need: post-it notes and a pen/pencil.

It’s time to combine the clarity tool with focus tool, that will equip you with all you need to feel in control and ready to move forward at lightning speed. This is my number one productivity tool that is really easy to put into place and the results are astounding. So, how does it work?

  •  Step 1. Grab your second list from the brain dump exercise above and three post-it-notes. 

    Write your three most urgent tasks for the day on each post-it-note***. Get to work on your first urgent task with your full undivided attention and focus. Don’t stop working on that one task until it is done (stop for short breaks when needed depending on the duration of the task at hand). When you have completed that task move onto the second urgent task and then the third. 
  •  Step 2: When you have completed all three tasks you can start the process again (tasks 4-6) and again (tasks 7-9) etc or until you have finished your set working hours. Clear, concise and actionable tasks are the most successful.

Tiny little wins in the right direction is the aim of the two tools I shared above. Following these steps will give you an excellent chance of succeeding - especially at a time when our minds are having to cope with the magnitude of what’s going on around us right now.

Remember slow and steady always wins the race. 

***Having smaller manageable tasks on your list will increase the success rate of getting the job done. If you have written down any projects rather than tasks now is the time to break those down into smaller manageable mini-tasks that can be scheduled on your post-it-notes. 

For Example, 

Project: Schedule all social media posts for April.

Smaller mini task from above project: write one social media post, find an image to accompany and schedule (x7 - one task added each day)

My coaching practise is open for new clients. I coach online and via telephone so you can stay in your PJ's and won't have to leave your house. I'm ready to help you gain focus and clarity in your personal and professional life. Please feel free to contact me, or alternatively you can search for a professional life coach on Life Coach Directory.

Life Coach Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.

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Hitchin SG4 & London WC2B
Written by Michelle Thole, IAPC&M Accredited Practitioner Coach (APC)
Hitchin SG4 & London WC2B

Michelle is an internationally accredited coach with the IAPCM, specialising in life, presentation and corporate coaching. She has over 200 coaching hours helping clients increase confidence, speak up in meetings, find love and get a pay rise too.
She also works with an array of companies on culture change, presentation skills and leadership.

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