DISTRACTION: Reclaim the Power of your Attention & Wholehearted Engagement
There are a lot of choices of where to direct our attention & the power of presence. According to a Microsoft study, the average U.S. adult attention span was 8 seconds. Most interestingly the average U.S. adult attention span has decreased by 50% since 2000—down from 12 seconds. The study noted “Heavy multi-screeners find it difficult to filter out irrelevant stimuli — they’re more easily distracted by multiple streams of media”.
Distraction is essentially the dividing of attention from the intended object of attention to an internal or external source of diversion. It is caused by a lack of interest in the object of attention, a greater attractiveness of something other than the intended object of attention, or often the lack of ability to focus. Distractions scatter your attention in all areas of your life, decrease your focused productivity, degrade the quality of your relationships & dampen the power of your presence. Distractions whether technological, social, or environmental, can be managed, re-focused & empowered.
How distracted are you by your phone, emails or social media?
Are you easily distracted while you work?
Do decoys and clutter derail your focus from your aim at targeted tasks, projects and goals?
Do distractions keep you from accomplishing tasks, doing important things & actualizing your bigger vision?
Are you distracted when listening to others in conversation?
How present & full engaged are you while making-love?
Below is an exercise to discover some of our less conscious habits & activities that we use to avoid being fully engaged in the present moment. And then noticing when our attention is scattered or distracted, we can reclaim the power of our attention to refocus.
Create a DISTRACTION List
Make a NOT To-Do List of activities you engage in to avoid being present, to avoid feeling emotion, to avoid moving towards achieving your goals
- Recognize when unfocused
- Recognize when are focused on the wrong things
- Recognize when doing something to zone out & avoid presence
- Recognize when procrastinating
- Recognize when busy to avoid feel emotions
- Recognize social media dawdling
- Recognize when spending time on things that don’t really matter
- Recognize when actions are underhanded attempts to please or impress others
- Recognize when over-committing