The Choice of Where to Put Your Attention


We all have our own points of focus. What’s got your attention? What most drives your thoughts, emotions or outer activities?

Life in this 3-dimensional system of reality is, at its most basic form, about choice. Creating them. Making them. Experiencing what comes as a result.

Yet the most important choice of all — the direction of our attention — is not necessarily one that we consciously make. It is often a product of the reality created for our consumption, and how willing we are to be caught up in the dramas it brings.

For instance, if you lose your job or income heads south, your attention is probably on money. Where to find it. How to get it. And of course, the implications of not having enough.

A lot of those thoughts aren’t even focused on the present moment, for you probably have food and shelter, and your other basic needs are provided for. But the situation you’re involved may be such that you’re concerned over whether you’re going to have them tomorrow, or the tomorrows after that.

So your attention is on an uncertain future, a “what if . . .” scenario that fills you with fear.

And rightly so. Survival is first responsibility of every being, sacrificed only under the most extreme circumstances. And if reality is playing out such a scenario where you’re concerned about your ability to provide for that survival and that of those for whom you have assumed the responsibility of support, then there’s a very good chance your attention is on what can you do (now and future) to minimize the prospects such a situation will develop.

There is no requirement that your attention be focused there. You could be like the grasshopper that fiddled merrily while the ants prepared for winter, going out and playing every day with never a concern for what will happen tomorrow.

Of course, you could ignore your own situation and put your attention on others and the problematic situations they face, spending your time and effort trying to help them. This is the course many servers take.

Or you could put your focus on what’s on other people’s minds, like when your spouse walks into the room and wants to talk about his or her concerns in some other area (and perhaps get caught up in the patterns your interactions perpetuate).

In actuality, there’s almost an infinite number of places you can put your attention and effort as you go throughout your day. Sometimes it is a matter of conscious choice; at other times those choices seem thrust upon you (and when you refuse them, judged by society as a form of avoidance).

Understand that in each of these situations, you are choosing what to focus upon within your reality. And that focus very much determines what comes next, helping to create the new circumstances that will develop down the road.

If you are to develop peace within you, it may help to create some separation between you (at your core) and the outer circumstance demanding your attention — and recognize that you are CHOOSING to put your attention upon it and devote whatever energy (be it mental, physical or emotional) you are willing to apply.

You may not accept that you created the situation, but you may be able to accept that you can choose how you will see, engage and respond to it. This “separation” between you and your outer reality will allow you to recognize that you are applying your consciousness to the moment in the manner and direction that will allow you to best create the experience you want.

If you can do it, it may allow you to better move through the subject of focus with awareness that you are doing so to experience just what you’re taking from it — be it struggle, angst, joy, or whatever.

In short, you will be exercising your power of choice to create your experience within the moment, no matter what life serves up.

This perspective will allow you to explore your life in new ways, and permit you to take more from it than just the repercussions the outer situation heaps upon you.

That may help you see that life is within your “control,” even when it appears not to be. And when you play with those energies, you just might also find new possibilities that you never could see before that allow you to find more of what you want along the way.

God bless you indeed.

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