Focusing on What Matters Most

Anna holding Greg McKeown’s magical book

I was recently gifted a wonderful book called Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, by Greg McKeown, and the book has been heaven-sent!

Although, I haven’t finished it yet, I couldn’t wait to share some #nuggetsofwisdom with you.

Especially, during this time of year when our personal, professional, and family lives seem to become most CHAOTIC with deadlines, well-intended commitments, and activities piling up left, right, and center.

And what ends up happening?

We deplete ourselves — emotionally, physically, and even financially.

So, let’s take a step back…

Did you know that the word priority came into the English language in the 1400s with the intention of being SINGULAR? Meaning, one priority. I had no idea about this and the most interesting part is that it was singular for 500 years!

Yet in the 1900s it became plural -> priorities.

However, as the author explains, when we try to do it all (have dozens of priorities), we end up having to make trade-offs that are not in alignment with our original intentions or energy.

He shares:

When we don’t purposefully and deliberately choose where to focus our energies and time, other people — our bosses, our colleagues, our clients, and even our families — will choose for us, and before long we’ll have lost sight of everything that is meaningful and important.

-Greg McKeown

So, what does this all mean?

It means that MUST be deliberate about our choices and learn to focus on what matters most to US!

Some Top Tips:

  1. EXPLORE & EVALUATE — When confronted with a new demand for our time and energy, we must ask ourselves, “Will this activity or effort make the highest possible contribution towards my goal?” This is where having CLARITY on what we want to achieve (our goals) is vital.
  2. ELIMINATE — We must not only determine the activities and efforts that don’t make the highest contribution to our goal, but we have to ACTIVELY eliminate those that do not. We must in essence get rid of all the “noise” or distractions around us in order to focus on what matters the most to us.
  3. EXECUTE — Once we figure out the activities and efforts to keep (those that contribute to our goals the most), then we need a system to make executing those intentions as easy as possible. It’s about harnessing our courage to take inspired action.

Of course, these 3 tips require one very important element and that is taking the time to pause and really think about what matters most to us.

Remember, we must be deliberate and make trade-offs between lots of good things and a few really AWESOME things.

So, for now l leave you with some food for thought & next week, I will be sharing some more #nuggetsofwisdom from the book.

Please do let me know if any of this resonates with you and/or if you have any questions. I love hearing from all of you!

From my Crown to yours, I salute you.

Anna Orenstein-Cardona was born and raised in Puerto Rico. She grew up in a multicultural home, where although money was tight, love was plentiful. From a young age she was constantly coming up with inventive ways to raise and save money. Anna received her Bachelor of Science degree in Brain & Cognitive Sciences from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and for the past twenty-one years, she has worked on the trading floors of various large financial institutions, both on Wall Street and in the City of London. In 2020, she founded Wear Your Money Crown™ to empower others on their journeys to Financial Freedom.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Anna Orenstein-Cardona

Anna Orenstein-Cardona

Certified Financial Educator (CFEI) & Money Coach passionate about CLOSING the gap in Financial Literacy. @MIT alum.