The Impact Zone

Healthy Distractions

31st March 2016

Healthy Distractions

Is there such a thing as a healthy distraction?

In my humble opinion, we all experience ADHD for things that don’t interest us.

By contrast, when you are pursing goals determined by personal values, driven by passion and belief you will always invest your attention and effort into creating success. It all starts with a clearly articulated vision fueled by the desire to succeed. So what do you want? (Btw – knowing what you don’t want does not answer this question!)

When I was competing for my 6 consecutive world titles, the number one threat to achieving my goals was distractions. I am a true Gemini, intensely focused when I need to be and easily distracted at the best of times… Squirrel!

My inability to maintain my focus cost me a win on several occasions because my attention was split between what my competition were doing in and out of the water, what was going on at home, observing spectators on the beach and so on. I had to learn to mitigate the distractions and focus my attention on the things that mattered: the changing conditions, creating a game plan, visualizing the outcome, stretching my body and preparing my equipment.

In every situation, understanding my strengths and weaknesses has enabled me to get the best out of myself, by preventing external circumstances from dictating my ultimate success.

It’s like sitting down at my computer to write this blog, while answering phone calls and occasionally checking emails. In order to succeed we must create the space to allow ourselves to F.O.C.U.S – Follow One Course Until Successful.

However, sometimes when you commit your attention to something, it can fall out of focus. Try staring at an object in front of you and see how long it remains in clear focus. You will notice that you have to adjust your eyes or slightly shift your focal point to keep your broader focus clear. These minor adjustments are examples of healthy distractions.

Michelle Payne rode her way into the History Books on Nov 3, 2015, becoming the first woman to win the Melbourne Cup. I had the enormous pleasure of interviewing Michelle one hour before the big race and she was extremely relaxed and quietly confident of her chances. She expected to be in the race from the start and held her nerve all the way to the winning post. After our chat she mentioned that she appreciated the healthy distraction from sitting alone in the jockey sheds with her thoughts. The fun and lighthearted interview followed by a few photos with members of the marquee provided her with a healthy distraction, enabling her to relax and take her mind off what she was about to embark on.

The lesson? When you are taking action towards achieving a goal, allow yourself some healthy distractions, ones that clear your mind and provide perspective, creating a positive mindset.

Manifestation blossoms when we turn down or tune out doubtful noise.

 

Layne x

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