Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Managing Our Distractions

A writer writes!

Most of us have every day life routines we follow.  Some are mandatory, such as working at a job to make money to support ourselves and our families.  Other routines are maintenance related, such as taking a shower or eating breakfast.  These mandatory and maintenance related tasks can consume most of our time.  The time we have left is our discretionary time.  We relax and hopefully enjoy ourselves during this discretionary  time.

During the course of our mandatory and maintenance related activities, we may find ourselves distracted by either external events or our own personal thoughts.  These times of distraction may sometimes lead us to go in a direction that is not beneficial to us.  While at your job, you may become distracted by a personal phone call to you, a personal text, or even gossip talk that you may here.  Distractions are unplanned and planned events that we all have in our lives.

How we manage our distractions can either make our day go well, or lead to  negative actions during or after our mandatory routines are completed.  Personal contacts you receive at work could impact your ability to focus on your job, leading to errors, or reduced productivity.  Gossip could lead to your having negative emotional reactions to what you hear, impacting again your ability to focus and be productive.

How can we manage our distractions?  First, do not allow information to come to you  that can wait until you are no longer at work.  Let your friends, family and others know that unless it is an emergency, they should not contact you at work.  A quick hello and hope your day contact is fine, but anything more serious will need to wait, unless it is a life and death matter.  Take time during the day to take a moment to simply say a prayer.  Focus your thoughts on communicating with God and ask Him to help you keep focused on what you need to do during the day.  Try to avoid people dragging you off your personal quiet work beach into their stormy day.  If someone has brought personal drama to the workplace, try not to get dragged into their drama.  You can offer help but at an appropriate time that is part of your discretionary time.

When you are on your discretionary time, try to ensure that the activities you have chosen to pursue are those that  truly involve what you should be doing.  All of us need time to relax and enjoy life.  There are many optional things we can do to relax. Vacations, attending concerts, following our hobbies, or attending sporting events are examples.  The world and man's imagination sometimes presents activities that may not be what you personally should be getting involved with.  These may involve illegal activities or at the minimum immoral activities. Yes, we even have distractions that come up in our personal discretionary time.

We should always first turn to Godly principles on how we should conduct ourselves in our personal discretionary time.  That focus can keep us from turning to negative distractions that even exist in our personal discretionary time.  As with your mandatory time, try to keep people and even your own thoughts from dragging you into a direction that does not fit into the principles of leading a life dedicated to doing the good things God wants you to do.  Doing so takes practice, focus, and prayer.  The more you do positive acts, the less time exists for negative acts to establish a foothold in your life.  Once in awhile, stop and take a personal assessment of those positive and negative distractions that exist in your life, especially in your discretionary time.

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