A poverty of attention

By on Jun 4, 2013 in Everyday Inspired, Great Quotes, Maria's Blog, The Creative Life | 0 comments

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Lately I’ve been reading the book “Manage Your Day-to-Day: Build your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creativity.” All things I really need to do.  I was absolutely slain by this quote from renowned social scientist Herbert Simon…and he said this way back in the ’70’s!

What information consumes is rather obvious: it consumes the attention of its recipients. Hence a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention.

Wow! A wealth of information creates a poverty of attention. Boy, I know I’m guilty of that. I fall into these times when I’m clicking over to facebook, or checking email or some news site. And I think, “Okay, I’ll just do this one more little thing, and then I’ll get down to work.” Or, “Maybe so and so replied to my email.” And I allow all these distractions to swirl in and carry my attention away from tasks that are really important and that need more focused attention. I know I’m capable of doing good work, and yet I allow myself to get distracted away from doing it and my end product either goes undone or is less than what it could be.

So, I’m looking at this book and thinking of ways that I can truly carve out time for creativity, instead of waiting until the distractions are gone, because: Guess what? That never happens!

Today I invite you to honor your ideas and your need for focused attention by making priority time for them. It won’t take away from what you accomplish. Rather, you’ll be more productive because you’ve gone at your task with greater attention and focus. As you look at the course of your day, and perhaps once a week you’ll sit down and block out time everyday for that focused attention to work on the projects that need it.

I hope you’ll include these Everyday Inspired reflections as a means to focus and attend to your life.

I’ll close with a beautiful quote from Frederick Buechner, one of my all time inspirations and guides in my spiritual and creative life:

Listen to your life. See it for the fathomless mystery that it is. In the boredom and pain of it no less than in the excitement and gladness: touch, taste, smell your way to the holy and hidden heart of it because in the last analysis all moments are key moments, and life itself is grace.

All moments are key moments, and life itself is grace.

So, what do you say? Let’s notice, together, the blessings of life. When we pay attention like this, marvelous things happen. Let’s live Everyday Inspired.

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