There is so much noise in the world – Facebook, Instagram, Podcasts, TV, the news, the fake news, youtube. We are bombarded. So. Much. Noise. And it’s totally and utterly addictive. And, for the most part, totally and utterly useless.
When there are so many things vying for our attention we fail to pay attention to the activities and relationships that matter to us.
This skill – to pay attention – is being lost, replaced with boredom and rapidly remedied with distraction.
Distraction, it’s insidious and rampant in our modern day, device-driven and device-dependent society. Not wanting to miss anything, we miss everything.
It happened to me. After leaving medicine, my attention lost its primary focus. I was directionless and restless. And as my burnout slowly lifted, boredom silently filled the void. And boredom was not something I was familiar with. I now refer to that life chapter as the post medicine void, and back then, distraction filled the void with velcro vengeance.
Distraction is boredom’s antidote and it is absolutely everywhere. We carry it with us to be sure we don’t miss anything. Scrolling Facebook, while you stand in the lengthy socially distanced grocery lines, skimming the headlines or the memes, responding with an emoji or a prefabricated predicted text, there is no thinking required. None.
- Boredom is not the scourge of society. It doesn’t need an antidote.
- Boredom allows our brain to wander and to wonder.
- Boredom makes room for day dreams.
- Boredom opens the door to our creativity and our imagination.
Over the years, I have been edging out distractions, filling the post medicine void with friends and family time; cello; reading; writing; blogging; coaching; cycling; stretching and more.
I am intentionally directing my attention toward the activities and relationships I have deemed important.
My attention is my most valuable asset. What a great thought to feed to your brain.
Make it a deeply held, core personal belief.
Because when you believe your attention is your most valuable asset, then your attention becomes the most precious gift you can give to someone.
It’s more valuable than time.
It’s more valuable than money.
And it’s certainly more important than scrolling will ever be.
- A comment rather than an emoji… Precious.
- A phone call rather than a text… Precious.
- A handwritten note rather than an email… Precious.
- A conversation rather than watching TV… Precious.
- Giving your attention, your most precious asset, to the activities and relationships you deem important… Absolutely priceless.
Nothing will impact the quality of your life or your future more. Guaranteed.