Returning to why

Tom Simpson
February 19, 2024
1 min read
1 min read

The fight for attention

Do you know the feeling of veering off course?

I felt it a couple of days ago.

A little bit of stress creeped up as I started to run faster, do more, and yet strangely feel less productive.

It’s frustrating and unfruitful, trying to force something to happen when nothing seems to budge.

So I stopped, dropped what I was doing, and sat down.

Closed my eyes for a moment.

As I felt air come back into my lungs and energy back into my muscles, I felt myself returning.

Returning to the spark, the buzz.

Returning to why.

Why I’m here, what matters to me, what I have to offer.

I had one simple word on my mind; creativity.

And yet it unlocked a world of possibility, desire, hope, ideas, passion.

You might have heard the phrase ‘attention economy’. It’s the new economy we live in, where our attention is the commodity—scarce and highly valuable.

So there’s a fight for our attention.

No wonder we veer off course.

What if the most impactful thing you could do today was refocus your attention.

To return to your why.

Why are you here? What makes you come alive?

You’ll know it when you feel it.

It’s enlivening to reclaim your energy, passion and excitement.

And that’s where the magic happens.

That’s where we do work that matters.

Work that matters is work we’re proud of.

There’s momentum in that, a self-propulsion for more.

Not to skim across the surface faster, but to burrow deeper.

Not to broaden focus but to narrow in on something important.

Because you care.

And that’s when people start to notice—that there’s something different about you.

What’s different about you?

What do you have to contribute that’s important to you?

Chances are, it will be important to someone else too.

It’s not for everyone because it’s hard work.

But it’s worth fighting for.

“The ingredient of love comes with sweat, it comes with energy, it comes with rigour, it comes with sacrifice, it comes with pain, it comes with laughter, it comes from mad fits of inspiration, and at the end of whatever it is, whether it’s a book you wrote, a cake you made, or someone you fell in love with, it is overwhelming and hard to put into words. And that’s the test.” — Simon Sinek

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