Larry Brauner

Stacey Chadwell once asked me, How do you maintain focus?

On this first anniversary of my Online Social Networking blog, Stacey’s question caused me to think and take stock.

I imagine that many blogs launched last year have long since been abandoned. How is it that I maintained my focus over the past year while many other new bloggers did not?

It has been suggested that FOCUS stands for “follow one course until successful”.

While this representation is simplistic, it is nevertheless more true than not. To accomplish something substantial, some degree of obsession and narrow focus is a prerequisite for success.

Revisiting the Ultimate Success Secret

As I indicated in Critical Success Factors, I take my cue from The Ultimate Secret to Getting Absolutely Everything You Want by Mike Hernacki in which he wrote:

“In order to accomplish something, you must know what you want and be willing to do whatever it takes to accomplish it.”

In other words, focus arises from intention and is maintained through commitment.

This principle is the key to sustaining focus and achieving eventual success.

To demonstrate my commitment, I was willing to:

  • blog for months before seeing tangible results
  • ignore doubts expressed by friends and family
  • read books about blogging and search engine optimization
  • mastermind with other bloggers to get their opinions
  • experiment, learn from my mistakes and backtrack as needed
  • put some of my other objectives on hold

Today I have more than 100 regular readers and receive thousands of visitors to my blog each month. My articles have been featured on top news sites.

I have a Google PageRank of 3 and high search engine rankings for lots of keywords that I researched and targeted.

I was willing to do what many others were not and was able to maintain my focus throughout the year.

Planning the Next Year

During the next twelve months I would like to take my blog to the next level, for sure.

However, I plan to apply the same kind of commitment and narrow focus to new projects such as developing my new Ning social networking site and mastering the intricacies of web analytics.

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13 Responses to “How Do You Maintain Focus?”

  1. Karen McGreevey on November 9th, 2008 8:09 pm


    What a great blog post! If anyone had any doubts before about the reliability of regular blog posting, they should be gone now.

    It’s also helpful to have “all the steps” (you took) in one place.

    You’re obviously a testament to what hard work and determination can do. And now you’re being rewarded for it. I’m thrilled for you.

    I will be adding the link you’ve supplied to my Web site and to my blog Web site tomorrow.


  2. Eunice Coughlin on November 9th, 2008 8:26 pm

    I totally agree with your post about having commitment even in the midst of doubts from others and even yourself! Many times have I sat in front of my computer and wondered if anyone ever reads what I write. But I know that if I keep at it, without wavering, and doing what I know works then it will eventually turn around for me.

    Thanks for the inspiring message.


  3. Mel Smith on November 9th, 2008 11:06 pm

    You have to have desire, the desire to achieve an end to a means.

    I have maintained a blog for quite some time now, and it is because I want to help everyone I can to become healthy and stay healthy, so I post about what will make you healthy or what you shouldn’t do if you want to be healthy.

    That’s my purpose in life now after going through colon cancer and surviving for 13 years now.

    Have a good day and stay healthy.

  4. Debbie Morgan on November 10th, 2008 12:36 am

    Hi Larry! Congratulations on your successful blog. Focus is very important as is passion for the work you do. It’s a great combination. Deb

  5. Bob Caine on November 10th, 2008 4:36 pm

    You hit the nail on the head. Too many people think that the can write a single post and be successful. There are a lot of people that need to read your article and take it to heart if they want to succeed.

  6. kriz cpec on November 11th, 2008 11:23 pm

    Thanks for sharing! I can see you have come a long way. Keep it up.

  7. Stacey Chadwell on November 12th, 2008 12:56 pm

    First, I am quite impressed with your plan to reach your goal.

    You were realistic:
    * blog for months before seeing tangible results

    Understood this is your goal, not theirs:
    * ignore doubts expressed by friends and family

    Became educated:
    * read books about blogging and search engine optimization

    Did your research:
    * mastermind with other bloggers to get their opinions

    Were open to correction:
    * experiment, learn from my mistakes and backtrack as needed

    Understood you can’t do it all, all at once:
    * put some of my other objectives on hold

    No surprise that you made it!

    Thank you for the honor of being mentioned in your blog. I am one of your avid readers. Look forward to hearing more of your plans for this year… and learning more about Social Networking from you.

    Warm regards,


  8. Fredric Abramson on November 13th, 2008 4:11 pm

    Those are a nice six keys to reaching a goal.

    To me, one of the most important is the realization that getting right means adjusting for the many times I get it wrong.

    Comments and criticism can be combined with suggestions. If you believe that’s where you are can be improved upon, then you are committed to improve. It is that commitment, I suggest, that brings the focus. Those who accept the status quo are unfocused, even when they do the same thing over again.

  9. Sharon Taylor on November 22nd, 2008 9:40 am

    Thank you for this posting. It has given me encouragement with my Blogspot. I blog and write, but feel I am just a voice in a sea of voices all trying to be heard and seen. But as you say, focus and keep at it.

  10. Larry Brauner on November 22nd, 2008 8:57 pm

    Yes Sharon. Keep at it and keep learning.

  11. Rechnungen on December 9th, 2008 5:55 am

    Determination is the best for focusing. Don’t let anything get in the way that will disturb you.

  12. Jeffrey D. on January 6th, 2009 1:13 am


    Getting your WORD out is the best form of expression, just keep doin’ it! Much respect due to Stacey for posing the question.


  13. Hank on December 25th, 2010 4:19 pm

    Great job Larry. Keeping focus becomes easy with a little discipline and having something to focus on that you enjoy doing.

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