How to pay attention to the details is the question?
Knowing what details you want to focus on is important. Many people make the mistake of saying, "If you do these behaviors you will be: rich, successful, loved, whatever." What's not true here is if you don't figure out what works for you, then you obsess about the wrong details. I have a better attention to details than most people, so I should be successful in all my endeavors right? That's the logic. It's wrong.
What you need to ask yourself is:
1. what details do I notice time and time and time again?
2. what details do I MISS time and time and time again?
2a. and how can I set-up nearly automatic strategies to counteract those missed details?
Real life examples:
Do you struggle to write anything? Us something to get it started: a mindmap/dump, blog for 15 minutes, stream-of-consciousness style. Do you miss paying bills? Use automatic bill pay. Do you like to read news/ blogs from various sites? Use a rss reader that displays information scannably fast. Do you miss appointments? Use a day planner system (try a lot and create your own mashup davidseah.com are brilliant. Fuse it with some other system. Or have you really put the time in to master any time management system. Remember it's time management, not complete time control. You can't control nor plan for every event. But, you can manage the time you're given.)
Within each of those examples (or anything you struggle with and have yet to realize that) are the details you either need to become hyper-aware of to deal with them. Or you need to become "aware" just enough to put a strategic method in place that deals with it for you. Think of it as a little script you can run every time you need.
"Personality Traits of the Best Software Developers"