Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Walking Away from the Land of Unimportant Things

"I wonder what that's about..." I thought. One of those infamous vague tweets had come through my Twitter feed and I immediately felt compelled to click around the internet to figure out what it might possibly be referring to.

After a few minutes of feeding my seemingly insatiable appetite for gossip, I pulled myself back and asked "Does this really matter?" I had to admit that it didn't. And I didn't have a good answer either when the next question I asked myself was "Then why are you focusing on it?" I took a breath, squared my shoulders, and walked away from the Land of Unimportant Things.

Walking away is good. Sometimes I barely even cross the border into the Land before I realize where I am and turn back. Sometimes I get far inland before I look around me and wonder how I even got there. But always, the ferry leaving the Land of Unimportant Things is a good one to be on.  There's nothing there worth obsessing over.

I find this helps. Every once in a while, I sit down with a pad of paper and I write down everything I focus on.  What activities do I engage in? What people do I give my attention to? What issues, situations, conflicts do I allow to fill my mind, heart, and emotions? Then, I start crossing off everything that probably belongs in the Land of Unimportant Things.  When I'm finished, what I have left are all the things, thoughts, people, and activities that are important to me.  I have left all the things that are worth being focused on.

That doesn't stop me from trespassing into the Land. I'm human. But, keeping my mind focused on the things that are important to me makes it harder for there to be room to focus on things that aren't.

How's your list?


3 comments:

  1. This is something I am so so so trying to do. I wander over there WAY MORE than I like. Sometimes I even KNOW I'm crossing into the land, but I just.don't.care. Not until I regret doing it. I need to put up a wall, I guess.

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  2. Cool reminder, Joanne. Indeed, the Land of Unimportant Things is all too easy to enter, and it takes discipline and focus to get us on that ferry. I especially have issues walking away from any excuse for procrastination when I'm editing my work (though not when I'm writing that first draft--looooove the first draft, haha). Thanks for the call to focus today!

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  3. I love this term, the land of unimportant things. Life is certainly full of them! It's so easy to get caught up in trivial stuff. It helps to look long-term - keep an eternal view. I like to ask myself, will this matter next year? Next week? Good post.

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