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  • Patrycja Skurzak

The Tricky Impact Of Distractions

Are you smoking, drinking and overeating for pleasure to balance out your own misery?

I was there 6 years ago.

Another day had gone too quickly. Another distraction. The cycle of life continues and you move with the current of your daily responsibilities.


From time to time you find yourself staring through the window of the moving train watching the sky changing its colour and the trees passing by. And then the why question comes again and penetrates your brain. Why am I doing this? Why am I here?


You subconsciously check the time and what? Time distracts you again and brings you back to your daily regime. It’s coming to 9am and you are on your way to work. You chose the same part of the train, trying to get the same seat in the wagon. Sitting comfortably, you let other daily distractions absorb your thoughts.




The next half an hour you spend thinking about nothing: daily news from a local magazine, people on the train and the way they worship their phones on public transport, the smell of coffee from the passenger sitting next to you, your working plan for the day. Sweet distractions. How easy is to just move with the flow of each day and let it guide your thoughts and actions?


Yes, that’s your comfort zone and you are there simply because it’s familiar and safe.

From time to time you find yourself daydreaming. Those brief moments when you let your imagination run free and wild, digging out all of the forgotten, little and big dreams from your past.


You start drifting away and you begin to see all those wonderful things you once wanted but “never had enough time, money or resources" to pursue them, so they simply remained your dreams, dusted and forgotten.



But you still like to dream, because the only thought of having what you crave for, doing what you love and being who you desire to be is making you shiver a little and puts a tiny grin on your face.


Oh but that’s your stop and it’s time to get off the train. Are you already late? Almost late? Off you go, back to the “marathon of empty faces”.

Onto another day ..


What an ultimate anguish to watch how people drain in deceive. How can anyone be fully happy, working on someone else’s dream from 9–5pm, smoking, drinking, cheating and overeating for pleasure to balance out their own misery. - Unknown

Can you relate to this scenario?


This was my life about 5 years ago. Sitting on that train, finding myself daydreaming and then rushing into the office to spend my entire day working on “someone else’s dream” -minus the smoking, drinking and cheating - but certainly overeating for pleasure.


I felt lost, I lacked purpose in life, I felt disconnected from myself. I was not happy. My job was okay but it wasn’t good enough. “Liking my job” was just another distraction that, if left un-identified, it would have kept me there until this day. I took control and didn’t settle on the “I’m fine” life. I guess, I wanted to find my spark.


“You have to find what sparks a light in you so that you in your own way can illuminate the world.” — Oprah Winfrey

Great, thank you Oprah. Finding that inner light and making use of it in today’s world is not as easy as it sounds, it takes courage and self-belief, which may be quite a challenge for many.


The real question is how much do you want it? How much do you want to break free and take full responsibility of your life, face your fears, take risks, fail on the way, pick yourself up, be seen, be judged and say a little goodbye to your safety and stability for the sake of the “bigger picture”?


That’s right, it’s a battle between your short term needs of the present and the long term goals guided by your vision.


For me it was clear. My short term needs were simply numbed by the unhappiness and lack of fulfilment in my every-day life. So, I took a dive into the bigger picture.


It’s a fight between the short term needs of the present and the long term goals guided by your vision.

I decided to step on a journey of conscious self-discovery, self-questioning, exploration fuelled by my burning desire to find my own answers. I was very clear on the kinds of distractions that had the power to put me off my track:


  1. People’s opinions on “who I should be”.

  2. Trends in society on “what’s the right thing to do”.

  3. Borrowed definitions of “happiness” & “success”.

  4. “I’m fine” life (aka: comfortable life, playing safe, no risk nor challenges, safety).

  5. Fear of failure (classic).

  6. People’s opinions on “who I should be”.

  7. Trends in society on “what’s the right thing to do”.

  8. Borrowed definitions of “happiness” & “success”.

  9. “I’m fine” life (aka: comfortable life, playing safe, no risk nor challenges, safety).

  10. Fear of failure (classic).




Those were my core blocks I had to eliminate building my courage and self-belief. I had to clear the table before the game was ON!


Self-discovery allowed me to form my own opinion on who I wanted to be, focus on my own journey and not the journey of others, set my own definition of success and happiness, dream bigger and accept failure on the way. I also accepted that this will always be a "work in progress" situation. Your purpose is not found, it is created, and so is your vision of yourself.


“The more you love your decisions, the less you need others to love them.” — Unknown

How? I started by focusing on:

1. Identifying my top values, skills and strengths.

2. Connecting to my passion and interests.

3. Getting clear on my drivers and motivators.

4. Understanding my fears.

5. Drawing lessons from my peak experiences (happiest moments of my life).

6. And MOST IMPORTANTLY removing social comparison from my life - it was me, myself and I, everyone else was on their own journey.


This takes time and it’s not an easy task. We are not used to working on our own self-discovery and they don’t teach us at school how to go about it. Well, no one told me it was going to be easy to just wake up and take control of my life but I felt it was going to be worth it.



Message?


Get rid of distractions. Don’t settle. Search for your answers. Find your truth. Don’t wait for them to be formed by the external factors (people, opinions, trends).


I often share this great talk by Jim Cathcart on “How to believe in yourself” with my coaching clients, when we dive into the self-discovery process.


Cathcart is focusing on some fundamental questions in his video, see below.



Questions:


  1. Know what you care about — what are your values in life, what is important for you in life? What are the values that motivate your choices?

  2. Know how you are smart, not just how smart you are in comparison to others — in what ways are you smart?

  3. Know what your personal velocity is — the intensity and drive with which you naturally operate;

  4. Know the background imprint — positive, neutral and negative that you carry on with you and what effect it’s had on you;

  5. Know your behavioural style — how do you come across to other people?

  6. Know the patterns in your choices so that you continuously learn more and more about what it’s like to be you.


It's your turn. Let yourself find the answers. When if not now?



Remember, pay close attention to what distracts you from “who you truly are” and “what you really want” and be prepared to step into the self-discovery journey to find your own answers.


For more information on deep dive self-discovery coaching programme, contact me on coaching@patriciaskurzak.com

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