Do you know what to ignore?

Knowing What to Ignore

When it comes to distractions, I can be my own worst enemy. That’s why it was fortuitous that I happened to be watching TV one Sunday when Joel Osteen, pastor of  the phenomenally popular Lake Wood Church came on right after my favorite political shows. What I like about Joel Osteen and his ministry is that even if you are not a particularly religious person, his sermons often cut right to the heart of what holds us back from realizing our dreams. The essence of his sermon that week, appropriately titled “Knowing What to Ignore“, was that you have to be selective about what you give your time and attention to.

We confront so many distractions that pull us away from the things and people who are important to us. These distractions abound like co-workers who do drive-bys and bend your ear about all of their problems or critical and unsupportive family members who remind you of your past mistakes. Some of what we need to ignore resides in our own heads – that inner critic who says you’ll never find your dream job or lose those last 10 pounds. Or how about those mini-projects you allow to distract you  instead of working on what’s really important? Osteen says that every time we allow these distractions to cloud our vision, they take us further from where we want to be.  Most of us have at least a short list of people and things we need to ignore including:

Fear of failure
Fear of success
Time-suck co-workers and friends
Our inner critic
Our lack of self-confidence
The list goes on and on.

That sermon really spoke to me because I had been putting off a number of critical tasks that were important to me simply because I was letting other, lesser important issues divert my attention. I’ll give you an example.  This year I set a goal to grow and expand the reach of this blog. I love writing. I love the community-building aspect of blogging. And yet, I was letting unimportant tasks take away from the time I needed to grow Boss Mom, time I needed to spend working on guest posts, reaching out to other bloggers I admired and honing my writing skills. I quickly realized that while I had the goal in mind, I had been allowing myself to get distracted. Really sitting down to think about the distractions (most of which were admittedly self-inflicted) that were keeping me from working on something I love so much, helped me get refocused. The result? I’ve landed guest-blogging gigs at several of my favorite blogs the first of which was published this week  (thank you Latorsha!). I’ve also lined up a few really terrific interviews with fabulous bloggers that I can’t wait to introduce you to. It took me a minute to figure it out, but now I get it.  If you are interested in this powerful sermon, I’ve linked up to it here:

Knowing What to Ignore

So here’s the question: What do you  need to  ignore to help you reach your goals? Give me a shout.

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Showing 8 comments
  • Susan Tardanico

    You are so right — distractions take us away from what’s central and what’s most meaningful. And then it creates a vicious cycle whereby we create more negative, sabotaging self-talk because we don’t believe we’re capable of getting back on track with the things that matter most. This post REALLY resonated with me. Thank you!

    • bossmomonline

      Susan, so glad you found it useful. I’ve gotten such good feedback that this is something most people struggle with at some point in their lives. Also, I agree on the vicious cycle. Negativity breeds more negativity and pretty soon you are saying – forget it! Put me out of my misery! The goal is just to get back on the horse and keeping going :-). Thanks for your thoughtful comment.

  • Bijee

    This was RIGHT ON TIME! Lately I have been spinning in circles of distractions. I keep praying for focus and focus on the things that matter. I haven’t looked at the sermon although I plan to, your words of encouragement are right on time though!!! Thank u!

    • bossmomonline

      Bijee – It’s a quick watch and definitely worth taking the time to view it. I had a similar reaction when I saw it “This is right on time!” Thanks for visiting and I hope you’ll come back.

  • Latorsha

    Thank you for sharing the wonderful post with me and my readers!

    Awesome advice. I think we all need to take time and really focus on what is important to US. Sometimes we work to hard worrying about others, and sometimes that needs to take a backseat!

    I look forward to what is next for BossMomOnline. 😉

    • bossmomonline

      Latorsha, thanks for your continued support. I don’t know a single person who doesn’t get caught up in distractions. That’s why that sermon really spoke to me! Glad you liked it.

  • Reply

    I will like to ignore a lot of things like web surfing, just sitting on the internet and browsing, shopping, emails, etc., it is an unending cycle. Other than that, I think I am a very productive person. Can’t wait to see what’s coming on Boss Mom Online!

    • bossmomonline

      Blessing, you hit on my hot button. Web surfing! Aargh! If I’m not careful I can lose two hours reading other blogs, news, etc. I set an alarm and limit my time otherwise, I too get totally sucked in.

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