Learning To Ignore

One of the most important things I learned in the last few years was the fact that my focus is actually creating what I call my reality. I know, it’s a pretty straightforward way to start a blog post about learning to ignore, but I do this on purpose.

Focus is the actual builder of your reality. Is the fluid that makes it move, change and look alive. Without your focus, things aren’t there. They might be (and this is something you can be aware of) but they aren’t there for you, for your reality. Focus creates everything around you and this is a subtle yet incredibly important shift form your standard reality approaches.

I’m sure most of you think that reality is something “outside” you. Reality is already there and it will continue to be after you. It’s independent from you.

Relax, I’m not going to dig into something philosophical right now. I plan to this anyway in a future post about focus. What I’m going to do right now is to show you how this standard approach of the “outside” reality can – and will be – used as an excuse.

I Can’t Avoid It

If you think reality is already there and you can’t do a thing to influence it, next step is to think that everything in your life is the result of a pre-programmed set of events. There is already a plan and you can’t do anything but to follow that plan. Of course, you will start to act like you have no power. You will put every responsibility of your life on the so called “destiny” or “faith”.

This is the easiest way to delude yourself and embrace a miserable journey for the rest of your life. Many people already think like this. This mindset is so present that you start to think it must be “real”. But you know, just because a 1000 people are saying that I can’t climb a mountain, this doesn’t necessarily stops me for climbing that mountain.

What I’m saying is that you can change your reality. Not only you can change what you are experiencing right now, but you can also create whatever you want. And even if you think you never did that, you already did it before. I’m sure you have memories of something really nice that happened in your life as a direct result of your actions.

Maybe it was the courage to approach your actual wife when you were a student? Maybe it was the decision to switch your career? Maybe it was a kind gesture towards a total stranger that filled your heart with gratitude and joy? Those were situation in which you modified your reality in order to obey your wishes… You made it happen. And everybody has these memories.

Now start thinking what was happening during that specific action. What happened to you during that sudden release of energy which created a shift in your reality? Where was your focus? You were thinking at something else when you proposed your wife? I really doubt that. You were thinking to finish that boring report when you quit your job? Hell, no, otherwise you would still be in that dark office doing a dull job.

Instead, you focused totally on what you wanted. You left apart everything that you didn’t wanted to happen to you, and focused only on what you wanted to happen. You wanted your future wife to say yes and you wanted that job to disappear from your life. Your focus was so clear, that  your reality didn’t had any other choices than to follow it. You were so focused that anything else in the universe disappearead. You were there. Totally there.

Start To Ignore

Shifting focus is difficult. Making your focus follow your desires and maintaining all your energy in that blissful state requires a lot of practice and patience. It can be a draining activity, especially in the beginning.

It surely was for me. When I realized that my focus was my reality builder I started to see how many things I’ve created. I created my company, I created relationships, I created value, I created potential. But on the other side I couldn’t notice that I also created mistakes, boredom, sadness or anger. I was finally aware of the fact that everything in my life was a direct result of my focus.

And I was overwhelmed. I really started to back up from this path. Can’t stand the fact that I was the only responsible person for that. This thing won’t work, I said. Too difficult for me. But after a while I realized I couldn’t go back. Not anymore. Not now, that I finally understand how things works. It just wasn’t possible anymore. I really had to deal with all the good and all the bad things I’ve created.

And that was the moment when I started to ignore. Because the second big discovery was that focus uses a constant flow of energy. If you put your focus on things you don’t want, you will take some energy from the things you do want to happen. The energy flow is constant, it’s your choice where to put it. You are aware of your focus, but you can’t really manifest what you want because your focus energy is weak. And why? Because you put focus on things you don’t want. So simple. Yet so powerful.

So, I started to develop my ignorance skills. Of course, I’m not talking about illiteracy or lack of knowledge but about shifting my focus from what I don’t want to what I want. Here’s what I did:

1. Don’t feel guilt

It’s so easy to feel guilt for not doing something. As much as you disagree, you do feel guilt if you’re skipping something, even you don’t really like that stuff. I think this is rooted somewhere in the early childhood, where all of us were drilled in to something called discipline.

Well, stop it! Don’t feel guilt if you’re skipping TV tonight, don’t feel guilt if you say to your boss you won’t have dinner with him because your family waits for you home. Don’t feel guilt if you reject a business proposal. Don’t feel guilt if you reject a potential partner. If you don’t like the stuff, just don’t do it.

I’m not saying it’s good to be harsh, on the contrary. Be as polite as you can when turning somebody down, but be as firm as you can. Don’t engage in stuff you don’t want, because you’ll take energy from things you really want to do.

2. Assess your goals often

Your goals are changing. Today you want to do something but tomorrow would do something different. It’s normal. Just assess your goals constantly so you know every second what you really want to do. It’s easy to get caught in habits or in recurring activities which don’t have a meaning anymore.

Starting to organize your life is a big step forward. The moment you start to know what your goals are, your focus will tend to lean towards that and shift from your frozen patterns. Starting to implement an organizational methodology like GTD might help here.

3. Don’t follow a topic or activity till the end, if it’s not worth it

You got caught in something but half way you realize you don’t like it anymore. It can be a conversation, a project, or a domestic activity. Just stop. The menace of guilt is there, you can feel it, right? What if you’re not going to finish this conversation? What the other person will think about you?

You know what? It really doesn’t matter. It’s ok to lose interest in some activities while doing them. Keeping your focus there is not ok. Just assess that activity, decide if you like it or not and then move on. There are not such things as lose ends when it comes to things you really like.

***

Learning to ignore is the first step in growing your focus power.

Not to mention that allowing yourself to ignore things you don’t want is a form of self-respect. Nobody can force you to do anything if you don’t want.



Running For My Life - from zero to ultramarathoner


The spooky thing about depression is that it sneaks in. There aren’t really trumpets and loud voices announcing: “Hail, hail, this is depression entering the room, all rise!” Nope. It’s slow, silent, creepy. It doesn’t even look like depression. It starts with small isolation thoughts like: “Maybe I shouldn’t get out today, I just don’t feel like going out”. And then it does the same next day. And then the day after that and so on. And then it starts to whisper louder and louder in your ears: “Why would you go outside, you loser? Didn’t have enough yet? Want more people to make fun of how much of a big, fat loser you are?”

And then you start to breath in guilt and shame, instead of air. Every breathe you take is putting more dark thoughts into your body.

Until you get stuck. You can’t move anymore. At all.

If you want to know how I got out of this space, eventually, check out my latest book on Amazon and Kindle.

Running For My Life -from zero to ultramarathoner

Dragos Roua

The guy who started all this. Entrepreneur, ultra-marathoner, tanguero, father and risk taker. I'm blogging here, but I also spend a lot of time in this marvelous space.. You're invited, by the way.

This Post Has 25 Comments

  1. Nice! I like this a lot. Has a lot of parallels with 4HWW selectively tuning out information (or tuning in only relevant information).

    I do this a lot now with articles online, books, TV shows – some may say that it’s judging something too soon (e.g., I read 1 paragraph and give up on the article), but who knows if it’ll get better

    And anyway, my life was good before I started reading – I’m sure it’ll continue to be excellent even if I stop 😉

  2. This is a wonderful article. You have a talent shining through expressing these matters.
    In my college days I heard my mom’s voice repeatedly telling me to not be distracted and focus on my education.There would be plenty of time for boys and parting after that.
    Well I compromised that.Partied not as hard as the others but chose not to get involved in a relationship. It really wasn’t hard to make that decision for me.
    Then the decision rippled over in to building my career.
    As my friends got married and started families ,my mom started singing another tune. This I should have ignored but unfortunately I didn’t.
    My lesson I learned from that is :
    There comes a times when parents should become friends and stop their role of nurturing their “child” of 25 and be more supportive of the person they created.
    The kid should do what is working best for him/her. For me I was thrilled to be working for the company and feeling my enjoying traveling and the satisfaction from my hard work. I didn’t have the time or desire for more.
    So I feel influence should be ignored even when it comes from people who believe they have your best interest at heart.
    I do know I had a very difficult time leaving that job and kicked the idea around for three months before I did.
    The thing is when each door closes another one opens up. How fast is up to the individual.
    Cheers

  3. @Sid Savara Thanks for commenting here and welcome! Yes, I really know the feeling of “getting it” before the end. I feel so good when I move my focus from that 🙂

    @BunnygotBlog So much resemblance with my story :-). My parents still think that I chose the wrong career, even if I’m approaching my forties :-). Sometimes it’s better to ignore something you should trust (like your parents good intentions) just to make room for your desires. Thanks for commenting and for the nice words, I appreciate it 🙂

  4. I enjoyed reading your process of working through expanding your awareness and how to focus it. People often don’t realize you also at times must ignore, or release in order to go deeper into what they are focusing upon.

  5. That’s very powerful stuff.
    It can be a scary thought to think that everything in your reality is something you have created, particuarly when you have fully realised the fact. At that point it’s a bit, okay that’s bad, but what can I do now.
    I can honestly say that I never really thought of just ignoring. It’s a great way to go, so thanks for sharing it.
    .-= Kaitlin M´s last blog ..This Is Why You Will Never Get Out Of The Real World =-.

  6. […] Once you’ve found the right focus, you need to put it to good use. How to do that is very concisely described here: Learning To Ignore. […]

  7. […] Learning to ignore is a fantastic lesson. Much more rewarding that you think. There must be an art of ignoring and they should teach it in universities. Spanning your focus in so many areas will only weaken you. Ignoring what’s unimportant will free up energy and help your stay focused and productive. […]

  8. […] Learning to ignore is a fantastic lesson. Much more rewarding that you think. There must be an art of ignoring and they should teach it in universities. Spanning your focus in so many areas will only weaken you. Ignoring what’s unimportant will free up energy and help you stay focused and productive. […]

  9. This post hits right home for me. And I’ve heard most of this stuff from The Secret movie already. There are just a few things that don’t sound right, maybe I misunderstood you:

    1. You cannot NOT feel something, whether it is guilt, or love, or anger, rage, and so on. They’re built on powerful chemicals that run through your body and make up the respective feeling. You can focus on them and observe how they manifest, but consciously choose how to react to that guilt, or you can transform the emotions into other emotions so that the same energy is directed into a positive direction.

  10. Hey

    thank you for the article. very interesting. i tried it many times before. my problem is : how to qualify ( the important ) and ( the unimportant ). because it’s a too subjective task. and how to achieve work till the end even when we don’t like it? that’s my biggest concern.

    thank you again

  11. Focus is definitely the best tool to use for reaching our goals. To ignore anything necessary to reach them could possibly mean failure. If the goal is important to you I would think you would do whatever it takes to reach it.

  12. Nice article! You are absolutely right about not feeling guilty for some choices and opinions. Personnally, I see that we are too much concerned in these days in what people will think about us, changing up our best focus simply because we could’t get other people’s acceptance. There’s a big shift in your life when you stop doing things you don’t like it just because you won’t accept being somehow “guilty” from upsetting others every other day.

  13. wow! the best article i have ever read regarding focus. life is so beautiful if you know where you are going. focus is yes yes not being guilty of not doing what you don’t like. thanks a lot for this. now i have focus.

  14. I understand the art of focus and I mostly agree, but I have a concern. This technique could be used to give up on things when they start getting more difficult. Even with things that you are passionate about, there seems to always be an associated task that is undesirable in some way. Or you are enjoying something, but then you get to a point where there is some kind of friction. Are we to take that discomfort as a sign to focus elsewhere or something that could take us to the next level if we push through it? Thoughts?

  15. This if f***ing hilarious! I’m tried to read this article on focus and a f***ing pop up ad comes up on my android I can’t f***ing close! I really do want to read this and will on my PC. No wonder I’m at a site like this and have a problem focusing!

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