Focus Grasshopper

Let’s face it, if you’re artistic, you most likely have a wondering mind. Focusing on a task requires silence, caffeine and absolutely zero distractions. Unfortunately, in the middle of church office life, this scenario is pretty difficult to come by. So what do you do? Here are a few things that have helped me over the years.

Structure: By its nature, creativity is random and resistant to structure, but your weekly “to do” list is not. Structure the things you have to do each week and create a routine. For me, I work through line ups and schedules on Monday’s, Work on next week’s music on Wednesday’s and schedule meetings on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s. Everything else randomly falls in place between these structured elements.

Environment: Get out of your office. For some people that means catching up on email at Starbucks or working from home for a day. For me it means going to a quiet part of the building where I can experience an environment change and concentrate on the task at hand.

Lunch: I struggle with this one, but don’t be a “lunch skipper”. Even if you’re slammed, you’d be amazed how much more you can accomplish when you leave the office and grab a bite.

A Quiet Start: We all struggle with this one at times, but closing your office door and getting even 10 minutes with God can pave the way for a productive day and can put your focus on the very reason you do what you do.

Planning: I’m blessed to have a great creative team around me and a Sr. Pastor who is scheduled almost a year out, but I haven’t always had it this good. Don’t be afraid to push people for the info you need. It’s impossible to be focused and productive if you have no idea what you need to be producing. Most Sr. Pastors or non-creative types have no clue what it takes to create great art…it’s up to you to open their eyes and get what you need.

These are just a few things that have helped me out, but the list could go on for quite some time. The bottom line is you need to be focused to be creative and it’s up to you to put yourself in a position where this is possible.

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