The Zen of Focusing Your Efforts




When Jacqui and I decided to get together this month to do some planning for our Working with ADHD business, we knew we wanted to make the best use of our time and get a lot accomplished. Even though we work very closely together and communicate almost every day, we only get to see each other face-to-face two or three times a year.

Day 1: I arrived mid-day Friday, March 23. Jacqui lives in the lively city of Montreal, Quebec, which is very different from my sedate, suburban Michigan life, and she has no need of a car. After settling in and getting a walking tour of Jacqui’s environment (where everything is “not far” — Jacqui’s code for “about four miles”), we got down to business deciding how we were going to work for the next several days.

First we organized our thoughts

We asked ourselves, “What’s the most important thing we need to do in our business for the next six months? The thing that, if we do nothing else, will have the most impact on the number of people we can serve?”

For us, that answer was easy: We already knew our biggest objective was to grow our business by reaching more people. Our niche is very targeted — we coach entrepreneurs with ADHD. And we need to make sure we’re finding as many of you as we can with our message and programs. This means we need to grow our email list.

With list building established as our #1 goal for the next six months, we knew that was also the focus of our next few days together. So, we threw around some ideas and listed a few of the list building methods we both wanted to concentrate on, including a new and different interview program, a new special report we’d been working on, and a renewed focus on our blog. We made notes of the details.

We then set a #2 and #3 goal and organized the tasks around all this. What could we accomplish in the next three days? Jacqui and I are pretty evenly matched in our work styles and how much we like to work — which is a lot. We couldn’t wait to begin.

Our fabulous photo shoot came next

Day 2: The biggest thing that makes our joint coaching business work is the relationship between the two of us, and we had known for awhile that we wanted to get some great professional photos of us for our site. It was pretty amazing that we found Anne Kmetkyto, or actually, that she found us — but she did, and our appointment with her was arranged weeks before I got here. Anne is a Montreal photographer and director, who has also become our client.


These are photos I took of Anne shooting Jacqui — I just love the light and shapes Anne’s equipment gives these snaps. I like my position behind the scenes much better than when Anne put me on the limbo background and pointed her camera at me! Jacqui warmed up to it really well, and Anne has a wonderful presence as a shooter. You’ll see the results of the actual photo shoot shortly in the design of our new Working with ADHD blog.


Preparing for and shooting the photos took most of Day 2, what with hair and make up and walking “not far” around Montreal. Neither of us woke up until we’d slept for over 10 hours that night, it exhausted us so much. Being a model is hard work!

Our focus paid off

Day 3: It rained on Sunday, the perfect day to stay inside and work the plan. With the photos done, our plan laid out, and plenty of sleep, we hit the ground running at 10 am.

Around dinner time, Jacqui felt compelled to make a list of everything we’d accomplished — it was a bit difficult for us to imagine how much ground we’d actually covered. Here’s her list:

• filmed 2 videos

• written a 10-part auto-responder series

• had our professional photos taken

• reviewed and chose photos for retouching

• redesigned our blog

• finished and prepared our special report for use on our site

• chose and planned an auto-optin plug-in for our site

And we still have two full days left!

It seems kind of Zen-like, the way everything has fallen into place. Tomorrow we’ll get out the sticky notes and make sure nothing is falling through the cracks, but I’m pretty sure we’re well on our way to accomplishing what we wanted to do during our time together. Having a clear idea of where we want our business to go in the near future, as well as what we wanted to do with these five days we have right now, really helped us to put laser focus into our work.

And, we’ll have time to go “not far” to Old Montreal so I can do some sight-seeing, too. I hope we take the Metro.






  1. How hard you have both been working!

    The Photos look great too.

    I know what you mean by “its not far” !!!

    Jacqui’s Mum Diane

    • Hi Diane,

      I’m sure you DO know what Jacqui’s “not far” means! I’ve got her number now, so I won’t be off guard again. Thanks for stopping by and letting me know you got it!

    • Glad you like the photos Mum ;)

  2. Phew! – you two know how to create a focused agenda and focused work. It’s an inspiration to me – and to most of us ADD’ers who work with you! Thanks for being inspiring in your passion and work ethic – and for just being great, fun individuals with heart.

  3. oh, Montreal is one of my very favorite cities. I spent much time there in the summers around 10-15 years ago.

    Soooo walkable and fun (in summer and in the warm weather you were lucky to have this past weekend–I know because my VA lives in Montreal!)

    I’m jealous and hope to be there in late summer.

    Your photo shoot looked like it produced fabulous results!

    Way to go.

    • Hi Jan
      Glad you are a fellow Montreal Fan too! i came here from England 12 years ago, for just a 1 year visit and then never left because I love it so much :)
      You are right, summers are the best time!!
      The photo shoot was fun and we did get some good photos that look like the real ‘us’ which is wonderful.
      Give me a shout when you next come for a visit!!

  4. I can’t believe how much you have accomplished in such a short time. I am tired already. Good luck on the rest of the Montreal visit.

    • Hi Paula! I thought of you when we went to Old Montreal — like I should have studied up and known when the city was invaded by the Huns and who married King Louie the 18th after Marie Antoinette was buried in Grant’s tomb, but since I didn’t, I enjoyed the tour the best I could and took lots of photos.
      (My sister is the best tour guide of any city :)

  5. Thanks Paula!! We have had a really great time. Lots accomplished and time for fun..and walks…too :)

  6. glad you both had such a great time and were able to accomplish
    what you wanted… look forward to seeing the photos…
    thanks for sharing your trip..

    • Hi Brenda,
      Hope your “photographer’s eye” likes our photos – you’ll have to give us your honest opinion! Thanks bunches,

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