The closer I get to launching my website and podcast the stronger and louder the words get.
The ones that try to distract me.
The ones that say I don’t need to work today.
The urge is strong to stay in bed, to talk myself out of the need to sit in front of a blank page every morning.
For over two months now I’ve been getting up at 5am. I’ve not accomplished this feat, ever, in my life! In the course of those 60+ days, the last week has been the most difficult.
It would seem that the closer a person gets to their finish line,the more the negative words and the distractions would fade away.
Those darn things would leave a person alone.
The distractions and negative words would say, “This one is serious. I’ll leave her alone.”
In fact, the opposite is true.
The truth is, the distractions and negative words start using more varied and subtle tactics. Those thoughts inside my head begin saying different things.
The distractions have become more indirect and sophisticated. They sneak up on me.
Instead, the voices say, “There’s no way you can get this done in the timeline you’re trying to complete this project within.” “You’ve got so much work ahead of you, working today is barely going to make a dent in the list you’ve got.”
The distractions present themselves as worthy.
I’m not lured in by Facebook or social media. I am lured in by trying to make another project I’m working on move faster.
That seems worthy.
I’m part of a team with that project.
My brain starts thinking, “I could drop everything I’m doing in my business and make something big happen for that next week!”
“That’s what you do when you’re part of a team!”, say the voices.
Somehow, the words and distractions have convinced me these other things are more worthy of me leaving my own project.
The class I’m teaching is struggling. My constant ideas and thoughts over my students and how to address what’s happening there is important.
And so, for the past two days, I let my mind tell me that I was pursuing worthy projects. Which meant it was okay to sacrifice my own.
I let myself be convinced that these things weren’t distractions but things worthy of my time. Leaving the work that feels urgent and important, and what only I can do, for things that will take care of themselves.
No one needs me to push those things along. Some of those things don’t want to be pushed along.
When any one of us is trying to do work that matters, the negative voices don’t let up.
The distractions don’t go away just because we’ve decided to do worthy work or create or make things that matter or because we are getting close to the end goal.
There isn’t a person out there somewhere who is the VIP party bouncer of my distractions, holding all the obstacles at bay, not letting anyone past the red tape or through the line because they aren’t on the list for the big event.
The only person that is your bouncer is YOU.
The only person that can bounce those thoughts and distractions, from my last two days, is me.
You and me. In our own lives.
We are the bouncers.
The bouncers of the stuff that distracts. The bouncers of the negative thoughts.
We get to decide who crosses the line into the VIP event.
We make the decisions about how we are going to safeguard and protect our projects we are preparing for the world.
Believing the idea, that the closer we get to the finish line the easier it will all be, is false.
The distractions and negative words will always be there.
They will take different forms.
Be ever watchful.
The second I realized what I was doing, I dropped all of the distractions.
This morning I woke up with clarity. No more distractions are allowed to cross the line.
This VIP party is mine and nothing is getting in.
In the words of Mad Eye Moody from Harry Potter, “Constant Vigilance!”
You and me.
We can bounce those distractions and negative thoughts.
It’s time to channel our inner Mad Eye Moody.
We have the power.
Let’s talk about you…
Have you been trying to get something big or small done in your life?
Do things seem to come into your days that show themselves as worthy reasons to not do the work you’re meant to do?
Take a look at them.
When you look very closely, how necessary are they? What story are you giving them that’s convincing you that you don’t need to do your most important work?
If you’re having trouble seeing it, try looking at your days, habits, and routines.
Is there one thing you’re doing that’s harming you? Are you eating too much sugar? Staying up too l late?
Not getting enough exercise? Putting off your scripture study?
Decide you’re going to stop doing ONE thing that is harming you. Stop. Today.
Clarity will show itself.
To noticing the subtle ways of distraction,