Last week a friend told me she was experiencing a lot of Mercury retrograde. What this means is that the retrograde motion of Mercury will trigger a lot of misfortune in your life. As I was listening to my friend share her experiences there was not misfortune occurring. There was no out of the blue mishaps. All of the things she was describing were the people in her life, including her, doing things where something happened because they were not paying attention. Not focusing on the task at hand lead to misfortune.
“The mind is like water. When it’s turbulent, it’s difficult to see. When it’s calm everything becomes clear.” Prasad Mahes
“Distracted driving is the practice of driving a motor vehicle while engaged in another activity” according to Dictionary.com. To me distracted living is the practice of living your life while mentally, sometimes physically, engaged in another activity. I have had my fair share of times my distracted living where I have run into doorways and walls, tripped up, sometimes down, stairs while carrying something. I have spilled food, broken dishes, made errors in typing, forgotten needed items, and made messes because of my distracted mindset. One day I had my aha moment. I realized that when I was doing a task and thinking about other stuff I was the root cause of my distracted living. Yep this was not Mercury Retrograde or any other cause. It was just me or as I tend to say “operator error.”
“Well, well, well. If it isn’t the consequences of my own actions.” Unknown
In 2015 Psychology Today in a article called “Distracted Living” said “You may not hear much about the crisis called “distracted living”. This is where you miss out on much of your life because you generally aren’t paying attention – or your attention is so torn in many directions that you really don’t focus on anything.”
Also sometimes in our rush to get a lot done at once we multitask. In speaking for myself there is no ability to multitask. When I have tried it has not worked well for me. The only multitasking I do somewhat okay is folding laundry while watching TV. According to an article in VeryMind “Multitasking seems like a great way to get a lot done at once. But research has shown that our brains are not nearly as good at handling multiple tasks as we like to think they are. In fact, some researchers suggest that multitasking can actually reduce productivity by as much as 40%.”
So how do we decrease our distracted living? Mindfulness. Yep put as much concentration into the moment in front of you giving it your focus. Kinda like when you are driving in a snowstorm where the snow is coming at you. You use your mental energy to stay alert. You are totally in the moment. Headspace.com gives ways to practice being mindful when brushing your teeth, showering, The article (the link is below) states “Mindfulness starts to get really interesting when we can learn to integrate it into everyday life.”
I began to change things for myself when I got tried of banging into walls with laundry baskets, tripping up stairs and rushing around for what I did not know. There was no urgent need to load the dishwasher or make the dinner. There were actions I could take to create more calm in my life. Like anything I began to practice mentally. Putting all of my mental energy and focus into whatever it was that I was doing. There was effort involved in keeping my mind in the moment. Yet the more I practiced, the easier it became, and more often than not it was a calmer more peaceful experience. My brain felt less on edge because of the mental actions I was taking.
Sylvia Boorstein said “Mindfulness is the balanced acceptance of the present experience.”
Most amazing person you are worthy and deserving to be all of you in your moment. To give all of you your time and focus. To stop crashing into walls, breaking things, and tripping upstairs. It will take practice and effort. Yet from this jumbled overthinking distracted brain if I can do this so can you. I believe in you!
May your attentive self be with you💜