Dealing with Distractions
Hear the podcast: http://www.spreaker.com/user/bathsheba/5-dealing-with-distractions
Dreams become nightmares at times. You’re in the midst of it; on the journey to pursuing greatness and suddenly the big bad wolf comes trailing behind you. The forest is thick, you can’t see that well, but you’re not that concerned because you have two other people running alongside you. Then they disappear and you are left running on your own in darkness trying to find your way out of a thick fog. People think that dreaming is easy. Most are excited when they receive a vision and talk about it for days, months, even years on end. But the moment you take a dream and decide to carry it out, stuff gets real, and real, really fast. If you’re an adrenaline junky, the best high you can get is off of a dream. The unexpected happens. No day is alike. Everything is unpredictable. You run into pleasantries, berries, nice beautiful scenery and then there’s the occasional serpent you cross and have to be very careful around. In addition, you have a wolf prowling behind. In it all though, you realize that if you make it through the forest, by the time you get to the other side, your survival skills will be enhanced, you’ll be prepared for what your dream offers, and fear will no longer have a hold on you.
The thing is, you have to get through the forest first–that is–without stopping.
As a visionary, you have to discern serpents and predators very quickly, and I don’t mean those that come in the form of people alone. I’m talking about anything that comes to devour your dream. Distractions are a major culprit. They are predators that prey on your dreams with a finesse you wouldn’t imagine.
Think about it.
You’re running through this wilderness, and suddenly find that there is a cottage in the woods. You heed to the smell of yeast rising and freshly baked apple pie.
Yes. You’re hungry, so you start trekking toward the direction of the smell. You haven’t eaten in a while, since you’ve been chasing after this dream and running away from what’s behind you. It only makes sense that you take the time to nourish yourself. You make a pit stop that puts you 2 miles out from your destination. It’s not a big deal right? Wrong!
Berries and other vital nutrition is found right in the forest. It’s more dense and lighter but because you focus more on a need you think isn’t being met, or is not provided for, you get distracted by something that is off course that meets a need that you don’t necessarily have. The answers are right in front of you. They are all around and within you on this journey.
Now the big bad wolf is even closer. The big bad wolf wants to kill your dream. He wants to remind you of all the stuff in your past that haunts you, and tells you that you can’t do what you aim to because you are not intelligent enough, you’re not pretty enough, you don’t have enough money. So, for the sake of this podcast, let’s just call the big bad wolf, fear. Fear is now closer than he’s ever been. This distraction has given fear a chance to creep up on you. You have taken your eyes away from your set prize of getting out of darkness and have decided to take a moment to sit lodged in a place that is not on the road to your destination. You have two options now: Continue running weighed down or take a break to rest to recover from that in which you’ve indulged.
What distractions are slowing you down? What are you feeding yourself to the point that it has taken you off course? Slowed you down? Allowed fear to set in? I’ve had several distractions this week while running through this forest and almost didn’t have time to write/post this blog. My distractions have come in the form of people, extra assignments, etc.
The thing about it is, sometimes it’s difficult to tell the difference between a distraction and what is merely, stopping to help a bird with a broken wing. How can you tell the difference? Well a distraction,–I’d like to think—is anything that takes your mind completely off course from your original focus, and I’m not talking temporary. I mean, it is something that consumes your thoughts.
You get wrapped up in it to the point where you can’t think about anything else.
I guess I should settle this with two examples: one of where the incident is one of assistance and the other one, a distraction.
This week, an older man fell on my car. Yea. It’s just something about my car. I dunno. It’s anointed; people are drawn to it. Lol. So back to the story, I walk out of work and as soon as I sit in my car it seemed like this man feel from the sky and dropped on the hood of my car. I don’t know where he came from. I mean, seriously. He had this smile on his face. I thought he was playing like a lot of the guys like to do so I kept yelling aloud, “Stop playing and get off my car.” I was tired and hungry too; on my way home from walking 6 miles in the MLK parade. He didn’t get up.
Two guys came jogging over. I got out of the car.
His smile was permanent. Hands were clenched.’
I checked for a pulse.
“Call the ambulance.”
One of the guys called the ambulance.
I ended up having to run the ambulance down for the man since they were at the wrong location. He was a broken winged bird who happened to be on my path.
Not a distraction.
Right after he was carried away on a stretcher, another woman was sitting on the hood of my car, sleeping. She was strung out on PCP. After checking on her and asking if she was okay, a bystander said, “Seems like you’re just saving everybody today.”
One of the guys on the street noticed my tire was going flat and put air in it for me. It opened up the opportunity to talk with them about the woman who is addicted to drugs.’
Not a distraction.
Why weren’t these two incidents distractions?
1) They were to benefit someone else.
2) They offered an opportunity for teaching which is in my repertoire.
3) They were intended to slow me down to identify my flat tire before moving forward.
4) They were still on course.
When you are in constant discussion with someone regarding a matter that has absolutely nothing to do with your purpose or what you should be doing at that present time, it is a distraction. This is especially true, if you are working on an assignment and these side conversations stir you away from focusing on what is right in front of you. Or when you constantly dwell on events that you can not change or people you can’t change = distraction.
At any point where you are attempting to control a situation that you have no control over, it is because you have fear right beside you. A good friend of my told me that. He said that the need to control is a sign of fear. This need to control others and situations that are out of your reach, are distractions that keep fear up close and personal.
I had several distractions like that this week. I am up at 11:20pm right now on Tuesday night writing this blog because of those distractions. Fooled by the idea that I can control people, things, situations….’
Truth is, I’m afraid like everyone else. I’m trying to survive in this wilderness and in survival sometimes you forget that what you need in right in front of you. In survival mode, you get used to fending for yourself and you want to have a grip on at least something because you fear that if you don’t, you have control over nothing.
Well, in chasing a dream, you have no control. In actuality, you are not just chasing the dream, it is calling you. But, so is fear and any distraction that could possibly keep you from making it out of the darkness; any distraction that can keep you in the darkness of night, never to wake up from the terror of fear the lurks behind. However, if you make it through the forest, you’ll see the light of day, and the people waiting on the other side, who too have awakened from the night that has overshadowed their dream, to see their dreams become reality.
Distractions are selfish:
1) They consume your time without making deposits back into you.
2) They leave you feeling irritated and annoyed.