In the last 48 hours the topic of attention or focus has come up a few times in conversation with others and more with myself. The general idea being that I get more of whatever I give my attention too. For example: I do not like peanuts at all, the smell makes me want to puke and the taste makes me gag and then there is the whole part of me being allergic to them with the possibility of death. If I spend my time focusing on how bad peanuts are, how I have to keep them away and telling everyone NO peanuts I am still giving all of my attention to peanuts. My attention to things brings more of that thing into my life whether I want it or not. The real skill here comes from focusing my attention on those things that I WANT to have in my life so I can have more of what I want. The more attention I give to what I want the less attention I can give to those things I do not want and the result is fewer and fewer of the unwanted will show up as I get more of what I want.
Somewhere along the way I learned to push against the unwanted which of course brought more and more of the unwanted by my attention to it. This is something that comes up over and over again in my life as I have not fully realized the power of this simple understanding. Make peace(accept) with where I am and focus my attention on where I want to be.
If you want more proof take a look at the war on drugs, terrorism, rape, hate crimes or anything that people are rallying to fight against and notice how the thing they are pushing against only gets bigger and bigger. If the same focus was given to compassion, love, peace, harmony, acceptance and so on then the unwanted would dissipate. It is not my or anyone one persons responsibility to change how the world thinks. I can only take responsibility for how I choose to think and where I give my attention.
In this moment right now I can give my attention to something that might happen tomorrow, that happened in the past or I can focus on what I am doing right now. Wherever I give my attention will be the essence of my experience therefor I best choose wisely to what I focus upon. Pay attention to that which matters most to me and I will be rewarded with more of it. Be sure to acknowledge how I feel about what I am focusing on as the feeling I have is the essence of what I will be attracting to myself.
I have two choices, I can let someone or something else guide my attention to what it wants or I can choose for myself where I pay attention. I like the term “Pay attention” it implies that attention is a type of currency that can be spent. The more I spend on something, the more I get and I only have so much attention to spread around so I better spend it wisely.