Think about the times when you’ve been remarkably effective communicating. No doubt there have been times in your life when your words, phrases, illustrations and delivery would have won you an Academy Award.

And then I’ll bet there have been times when you’ve babbled on just like some of those really awful Oscar acceptance speeches - without the benefit of an orchestra playing to cut you off and drown you out.

It happens. But the “bad case” happens way too often, wouldn’t you agree? Why are so many people inept when it comes to communicating? My answer is -

F.O.C.U.S. They have limited or no focus.

My assertion would be that in the “best” cases you had extreme clarity as to what you wanted to say, you were in the moment, one hundred percent focused.

Most people are not, most of the time.

Situational Stupidity - We live in a hyper-drive, I-want-it-now, give- me-service-in-a-nanosecond world (especially, in the New York, New Jersey, metropolitan region). There are times when we don’t seem to have time to stop and think before we blurt out something stupid. We tend to react, instead of respond.

I’ve done it. And still do it. Ask my wife.

But I do it a lot less than most people, not just because it’s my business. I believe it’s because I am extremely focused on my goals, my desired outcome. I’m also sensitive to other people’s inabilities when communicating and cognizant of the non-verbal signals I receive.

I use the acronym F.O.C.U.S. in my seminars to help the audience remember how important the power of focus is when selling, leading, managing, communicating and creating a Best Year Ever!

Below you will find the short description or words which represent each letter in the acronym.

  • F - Finish (Begin with the end in mind)
  • O - Obstacle or Opportunity
  • C - Commitment
  • U - Unstoppable Belief System
  • S - Stay the Course

Of course, preceding the power of F.O.C.U.S. is energy, belief, goals and time management or prioritization of time, as described in the first four modules of the Best Year Ever! program. Geoff Steck, my writing partner and co-creator of BYE, and I are always asked why the modules are arranged in a specific order.

Our Answer: Everything you do in life hinges on energy (yours), belief (self-belief), goals (personal and professional) and time (168 hours per week). Once you embrace the facts, you become more effective in every other area.


When you know your goals you begin with (F) finish, the end in mind. In his best-selling book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey says, “If you begin tasks with the end in mind you will be more productive.

With every perceived obstacle that life may throw at you, there is also an (O) opportunity. Most people (you may even know some of them intimately) would rather focus on the other Big O — obstacle. But why not ask more self-empowering questions like, “What’s great about this?” Or “What can I learn from this experience?” Hmmm… Good question.

If you’re (C) committed to your goals, there is always a way. Most salespeople fail to follow-up. They are not committed. The fortune is in the follow-up. If you’re truly committed to a desired outcome, you will take action until it is achieved.

I have an (U) unstoppable, bullet-proof belief system about who I am and what I represent. When you work hard on building a better you, life gets easier. I suffered severe panic attacks for 5 years. Then I discovered personal development, and the strategies and philosophies to help me build my self-esteem and self-confidence.

I have a friend who earns $85,000 dollars a week. I recently asked him, “What is the secret to making all that money?” He answered, and simply said, (S) “Stay the course.”

And the envelope, please. To communicate with confidence, earn the golden statue and make an acceptance speech that earns a standing ovation, I encourage you to embrace, get and use the power of F.O.C.U.S.

Eric Taylor - Chief Inspiration Officer
Empowerment Group International
732.982.8554 - Energized Office

Author's Bio: 

Eric Taylor is the Chief Inspiration Officer of and founder of New Jersey based Empowerment Group International. He delivers more than 100 energized and interactive keynotes, workshops and seminars each year to corporations, associations and tradeshows. He is the author of the Energy Passport, Co-creator of the Best Year Ever! Success System and Co-author of The Complete Sales Training Encyclopedia. To get complete details about Eric’s background, his products and services, visit Eric Taylor’s Blog and review Eric Taylor’s Profile.