Pausing to Focus {#Write31Days}


I am really bad about filling my day up with busy working and getting nothing accomplished. I often have to pause to reflect on why I am doing what I am doing. Pause to prioritize what I should be doing.
There are times I have to pause five or six times in the course of an hour, to consider my actions. There are other times that I am driven with such passion and purpose that I don’t need to take time to pause. In those times the real me has already risen to the occasion and I am moving with such focus that nothing can deter me.

It takes pausing for a moment for me to question, “Am I doing something with a purpose?” and “Am I doing something on purpose.” If I can’t answer yes to at least one of those two questions, then I likely need to reprioritize my activities. If I can answer yes to both, then I should probably allot more time to the activity.

When I can only answer no, then I have to consider what is the purpose of my action. Is it for someone else? Is it because someone else didn’t do what they should have? Is it out of obligation? Maybe I need to have conversation with someone instead. I might need to hand them back their responsibility. I might need to consider why I shouldn’t take it on. I might need to determine if it is a real obligation that no one else can or should fulfill, or if I am taking it on as a martyr.

If what I am doing really has no purpose, then I might need to consider stopping it completely. I might need to pump the breaks and take a longer pause to see if it is even something that needs doing. It is easy to get into autopilot and waste so much time that what needs my attention doesn’t get it.

If you find yourself busy, but feel like you are spinning your wheels, pause. Ask yourself “Does what I am doing have a purpose?” It might be in meeting a need – whether basic need or somethings like safety or security. The need might be your own, or for someone else. It might be in producing personal growth, like learning new information. It might be on building a connection, a new relationship or a deeper relationship.

Then ask, “Is the action I am taking on purpose?” Some things we do on auto piolet, but life is not lived there. We need to be deliberate in our actions. We need to be mindful of the things we say. There is nothing wrong with having margin in our life, as long as it is intentional. There is nothing wrong with being busy, as long as the actions are intentional.

This blog is part of a #Write31Days series on Focus with prompts by #FMFParty. Write 31 Days is an online writing challenge, where bloggers pick one topic and write a post on that topic every day. Five Minute Fridays provides prompts and encourages writers to free write for five minutes on the prompt.

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