Most people call them distractions and yet I find this word doesn’t fully describe what I mean and what needs to happen for me.
I’m great at allowing distractions. I wake up in the morning and check in with my day. It’s often filled with miscellaneous projects and accomplishments, some I look forward to more than others. On rare occasions I’ll find I have extra free time I get to play with and enjoy “want to” activities which may, or may not, include catching up on things I’ve willingly procrastinated.
There have been plenty of times when I set out to accomplish certain things and I allow myself to be completely distracted and derailed from whatever it is I feel I need to be doing most. As the day wears on and the object of my focus is continually pulled away I become increasingly frustrated and annoyed that I can’t seem to get the time and focus needed for said project.
Now, as an “Own your shit” kind of teacher I have to own and embrace the fact that I’m allowing these other things to take precedence over whatever I’m claiming needs to be my focus. I have to step back and ask Why I’m allowing the distractions and what am I subconsciously avoiding by choosing one over the other?
Sometimes I easily know the answer, others I struggle to find it. And then there are times when I find the answer, don’t like it and choose to continue actively avoiding the very thing I now realize I am complaining about failing to accomplish.
Recently I’ve come to a new awareness of my mental state. I was stressed and challenged on a few different levels which meant my brain was struggling to stay on top of things. The more balls I attempted to put in the air, the fewer I succeeded at keeping up. I was dropping things right and left and these distractions helped feed into the problem.
And then, through conversations and processing, the inspiration and understanding came in.
My brain was so overwhelmed with my day to day it needed a break. I was subconsciously choosing to take those breaks by creating, and accepting “distractions” to pull me sideways.
Once I recognized my mental body needed additional self-care and attention I chose a new way of thinking. You know my penchant for picking a new word when I don’t like the intention of the previous one. Graduation instead of Retirement because of the opportunity it represents. Musing instead of journaling because it feels better and more accurately describes what I’m doing.
In this case I decided to switch my word from “distractions” to a more descriptive and intentional “alternative focus”.
Today, when I’m attempting to accomplish something and get sidetracked I can pause and ask if I need a temporary alternative focus. Perhaps a walk around the farm or making a cup of tea will help. Maybe I need to read a chapter in a book or run an errand. A nap could be the perfect reset.
Whatever I decide to do, at least I’m aware of it and choosing into it instead of allowing frustration and lack of progress to fuel my day.
An added bonus is the fact that, at the end of the day, instead of being annoyed at all of the times I was distracted and didn’t accomplish this or that, I’m thrilled with all the intentional alternative focus things I succeeded at. Self-care included!
I hope you’re doing well.
I pray you’re loving yourself and giving allowances for the hurdles you are overcoming.
Do a little extra self-care and I look forward to touching base again next week;)