I define it as: the ability to perform while distracted.
Take me for example. Here I sit with four dogs at my feet (and let's just say it is garbage day - it is BTW). Also, I took two days off of work this week so the amount of work I need to do on this day is high. Add to that, lack of sleep. This is a good test of my ability to focus. However, I am failing miserably.
I have attempted to make it better by drinking caffeinated beverages, putting the dogs in their respective kennels, telling my coworkers to stop calling me, giving all the dogs a bone to chew, taking headache meds, and in general trying to redouble my efforts on focus, yet focus elludes me.
I think about what I ask my little Tazzy to do on an agility field. I ask him to follow my lead while correctly moving over and through obstacles while dogs are barking, flags are waving, there are things moving fast all around him, strange people standing around staring at him, food being cooked nearby, and a treats waiting for him at the end of the run. And I ask myself, how does he do it? How does he tune it out?
Focus is a really important thing that we as humans need. Think of that steriotypical image of a husband watching TV. Kids are killing each other, the dog is pooping on the carpet, the doorbel is ringing, the pipe in the kitchen just broke, the wife is yelling for help, yet that man can focus on that game and not realize ANYTHING is happening around him and when the woman finally throws something at him and hits him in the head he says, "What was that for?". How does he do it and why can't I?
I gues this is the question of the ages. I'm going to go back to work now and focus.