I find that one of the most difficult things I face in almost any endeavor is staying on course. There are so many tasks, projects, and agendas that compete for my attention. Some come from within. I find myself getting off track because another path presents itself, another “great idea” springs up into my mind, or some appealing distraction lures me away. At other times the distractions come from others. People around me have their priorities, and because we live and work together, we depend upon and lean upon each other to accomplish our goals.
The internal struggle is knowing when to say “no” to the internal or external pulls at our attention. We can’t cut ourselves off from others. We shouldn’t ignore some of the impulses and ideas that appear to us. But, we must find ways to limit distractions. We must say “no” to ourselves and others. I think, in my case, I need to say “no” more often.
On the surface, this approach to staying on course seems selfish, especially when we say “no” to someone else. However, if my priority is worth doing; if it has a compelling “Why,” then it isn’t selfish to make it the priority and to say “no” more often. In fact, it may be that by staying focused and accomplishing my goal, I will be able to be a better servant to others and their priorities. If nothing else, I’ll have greater peace in my soul, which will make me more tolerable to be around.