Relief from petty torment is on its way

The richness of life is often overlooked by giving our attention to the wrong things.

Petty vanities, minor deceits, minuscule inconveniences, trivial irritations, trifling nuisances, imagined obligations, unnecessary activities, pointless distractions, we clutter our existence with all of this psychic debris.

Both consciously and unconsciously.

And that’s why we never seem to notice the extraordinary beauty and opportunity and joy that lies right before us.

Not because we’re blind, it’s because we’re busy.

We get sucked into the undertow of our expanding pile of nonessentials.

The problem here is, our sense of proportion is running on an outdated operating system. Whatever chickenshit thing of the moment has our attention, we convince ourselves that we don’t have more important things to do. That we don’t have higher priority demands on our time.

But it’s just a story we’ve decided to tell ourselves. We’re acting from a place of avoiding pain, not provoking pleasure.

Begley did fascinating research on this issue in her book about compulsions. She writes:

Compulsions come from a need so desperate, burning and tortured that it makes us feel like a vessel filling with steam, saturating us with a hot urgency that demands relief. But while there is relief, there is little joy.

Have you ever felt that way while checking your phone furiously?

When it comes to mastering the art of proportion, entrepreneurs are often masters. As business owners, they understand key economic concepts like leverage, return on investment, labor intensity, opportunity cost, and the law of diminishing returns.

That’s why they don’t tend to waste time on trivialities. They have enough on their plates and in their minds. There’s no room left for additional psychic debris. It’s simply not a prudent use of their time and talents.

There are a million other pressing issues that need their attention that are far more important and will add more value to their business.

If only more of us thought this way. The collective anxiety level of the country would plummet if people trained themselves to reprioritize their attention with greater mindfulness.

How many of your demands could be reduced if you put some energy into eliminating the distractions that now fritter away your attention?


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Author. Speaker. Strategist. Songwriter. Filmmaker. Inventor. Gameshow Host. World Record Holder. I also wear a nametag 24-7. Even to bed.
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