I’ll be the first to admit I have a hard time letting go of distractions. From the apps on my phone dinging to the long list of things I have to get done for work each day, it feels like my brain or body never rest.
I’m a type-a productivity addict. If something can be marked off and I think I have the time then you best believe I’m going to try.
Even if it means sacrificing time with the ones in my life that matter the most. I had never really taken the time to think about what I was missing out on until recently.
It just never occurred to me that I couldn’t get those moments back.
I don’t want to be the woman that my daughter so eloquently describes as a phone addicted.
“Mom just wants to be on her phone all of the time. It’s not because she doesn’t like us it’s because she’s always working.”
Talk about a slap in the face.
Letting Go of Distractions
You see for years my phone has been my lifeline. The to-do list and my social media addiction live on that device.
That phone feeds the beast living inside of me and I never saw anything wrong with it until my daughter so graciously pointed it out to her father.
The need to be productive has always been a driver for me. It’s a blessing and a curse really.
Pair that with wanting to keep up with everything going on with my friends and family and I never put the damn thing down.
Especially since I work for myself now I have this need to always be on. Even when I’m off I still have things going on inside of my head.
The control freak inside of me sank its teeth in years ago and doesn’t want to let go.
Letting go of the “you shoulds” and the distractions haven’t been easy. In fact, it’s been downright rough. But it was the answer to my problems and might possibly be the best decision I’ve ever made.
There is nothing worse than living in the past. My biggest fear is watching my life pass me by as I sit braindead on my devices.
I don’t want to miss these fading moments.
I can see it so clearly.
One day I am sitting the bleachers at their high school watching my little girls walk across a stage graduating. Then they will shake their principal’s hand and take their diploma. After the celebrations, they will come home and start talking about college and moving out.
Then the day will come all too quickly when my husband and I are standing on the front lawn waving at them as they drive away. Bags packed. Ready to conquer this big world.
That moment makes me sad and happy at the same time.
I’m sad because I don’t want to miss the fading moments of their childhoods and yet I am happy to know that my girls will go into the world and move mountains.
I just have to put the phone down and start letting go of distractions.
I am cherishing these moments where they ask for my approval on an outfit. I love when they say, “Mama watch my new dance moves!”
These fading moments won’t last forever and all too soon we will be standing on that front lawn waving to our children as they drive away.
Taking advantage of these moments gave me new life and helped me to grow closer to my girls. Being present and letting go of distractions has bred new life into my soul but it hasn’t come without challenges.
Learning To Be Present
I had to learn a whole new way of life. I had to learn to be present in the moment for my family.
It wasn’t an easy task. It has meant putting my phone on do not disturb and coaching myself to not touch it. I have gone as far as putting it in a room in a drawer I rarely go in.
You see I have always had this need to multitask. Oh if I can just get these three things done while the girls play I’ll be ahead tomorrow.
The thing about this thought process is tomorrow is the future and today is the past. The second I lay my head down and go to sleep there isn’t any going back.
I can’t live in the past.
Learning that multitasking wouldn’t fit our family time was a hard bullet to swallow.
Instead, learning to prioritize based on our family values and my goals for my life, marriage and motherhood was easy.
What was it that I truly valued? Family time.
What was it that I truly want for my husband and kids? To be part of the give and take in our relationships.
There is where the priorities and my to-do list started shrinking. Things that I thought were so important before became less so.
Nothing was quite as liberating as knowing the changes I was making in my life was for the greater good.
I will never look back on my life and regret not spending more time getting to know my loved ones.
Then something incredible happened. I saw one of my favorite authors speak in person. I got to shake her hand and meet her. I knew from the moment I walked off of that campus after seeing Rachel Macy Stafford speak that I was on the right path.
A calmness came over me. It was like a sign from above that this was the path I was meant to be on and nothing else mattered.
Doing this for myself, my family and in a roundabout way my readers is what keeps me going day in and day out.
When all of this is said and done and I’m sitting in my rocking chair when I’m 80 I will look back on my life and be thankful for the lessons I’ve learned.
I’ve learned many lessons along the way but the most important lesson I’ve learned is life is fleeting.
I have to stop and be present for my family because I didn’t have them so we could all sit around together but not be together. Life is worth living right now.
Letting go of distractions has made me a better mom and you can do the same.
Determine Your Family Values!
Learn what your family values are today so you can use them as a guide in your household.