How to Overcome Resistance that Steals Your Focus

By Lisa | Blogs

Mar 02



The challenges of life are constantly pushing you to change your focus. This past week in our household there has been a lot of additional stress and change of focus due to family issues. Some of it was a thing asked of us that would take us away from what we feel are our priorities in our own life, making it a distraction if we help in the way requested. Not to mention it would affect deadlines set to reach some of our goals. Other things were from areas that have taken place that you cannot change so you have to accept them, adapt your plans and move on.


When you have goals and you make certain things in your own life a priority you will encounter resistance by those that love you wanting your help with things. It’s difficult to say no to your family, and it’s annoying when guilt or manipulation is used to make you feel you have no other choice but to do what they want on their timetable.


You will experience resistance with your job wanting you to work overtime. You will have challenges with your children becoming ill and needing you when you have your schedule planned out in one direction. Some of this you can’t do anything about but to accept it and go through what is tossed your way on that given day. Other things you need to say, ‘no’ to, and that you cannot help at this time.


These distractions can cause you to miss out on precious time you needed to work on your own goals. When these type of issues pop up it can cause you to lose your focus for hours or even days. Below are some tips that I use to help me regain focus when distractions and resistance come my way.


• Reduce the stress – take several minutes to take some deep breaths and to calm the stress you are feeling due to the circumstances that have come up. Sometimes your stress comes out, as frustration or anger and you have to be careful not to take it out on your immediate family. A few minutes of calming yourself will be key to make better decisions, not react towards others and keep your own health and well being in tact.


• Review your goals – they should be written down and easy to access daily. Read over your goals, read over the plan or steps you have laid out to achieve them, refresh your memory as to what you wanted to accomplish and by what date.


• Dream board – look at your dream board, which is a visualization of your goals. Read over each saying that means something to you, glance at each image you have upon it, and take a few minutes to recharge your desires to achieve them.


• Read your affirmations – take your goals and the things you struggle most with and create affirmation statements that you can read several times a day. Usually reading them first thing in the morning and right before you go to bed helps you maintain a positive outlook that is always useful each day to keep you going in the right direction. On more challenging days read them more frequently on that day.


• Create an inspiring playlist – there are songs that speak to you, make you want to do more, achieve those goals and dreams, push yourself and help you to deal with distractions when they become a challenge. Create for yourself a music playlist of songs that touch you and help you want to take action. When resistance comes knocking turn on your playlist and use it to help you refocus.


• Take a walk – any time you are feeling stress from the distractions in your life take a break from it all and take a walk. Not only will you get some exercise, which reduce your stress, but it also clears your thoughts and helps you figure out the best course of action to proceed during challenges.


• Get out your journal – take a few minutes and write out what you are currently feeling when resistance shows up or demands are placed upon you from others that will change your direction or focus. Get your feelings out and while doing so you can start to open up to other possibilities that could deal with the challenges. Even if you end up on the hook to deal with them you can at least work it out so you don’t give up your time you had for yourself and your goals and still add in this item but based on your terms.


• Watch something inspirational – there are movies that can inspire you to do your goals and take action to make things happen. Allow yourself a couple hours to do this instead of fuming over the situation. It might open up new ideas, a collaboration that could be helpful in this situation or something totally new you haven’t thought of until that moment.


• Take time to pray – whether you believe in God or not, taking a few minutes to say a prayer for guidance through this situation or to ask for strength and wisdom could help you more than you realize. If you take a few minutes after you pray to just sit quietly and listen you may receive insights as to how to approach the challenges in the best way.


• Talk to a friend – asking a friend for their opinion about a particular situation will be beneficial to you since they aren’t close to the problem and will have a more open mind. It also helps you get the frustration you are feeling off your chest with someone that cares about you and is your friend. You could even ask your friend to just listen and I’m sure they would do that too if you wanted to just vent. They may also have an answer to help you that you wouldn’t of thought of due to being so close to the situation.


• Role reversal – when we take a moment to look at what you have been asked to do from their perspective, does it change your reaction? Sometimes we are asked to help because the person asking knows nothing about that request and they need others to help them. Are you qualified to do the request? Maybe you should be flattered they asked you in the first place.


• Limited time – analyze if you have the time to help and if not make some suggestions as to how to get it done in other ways. Another thing to look at is if it can be done a little at a time, meaning you can’t sit down and spend four hours on the project needing your help but maybe you can do thirty minutes one week and thirty the next until it gets completed. Be open and honest about your time issues with the one requesting your help. If they need you that bad they will be glad you can spend whatever time you have available to help them. Especially if they are getting help for free. If they want it sooner then they will have to seek help elsewhere even if they have to pay for it to be done by someone else. Some requests come with people offering to pay you and you have to analyze how long that project would take, how much you would charge and go from there.


• Not in your control – there are things that happen that you can’t control and the only thing you can do is accept it, adapt, refocus and move on. If your family gets sick that’s not in your control, if you have to take time off work to be with them, that too is not in your control. You adapt by figuring out what you can get done while you are at home with the kids.




When it comes down to it you are in control of your time, your action and your focus. You determine if you take on additional projects or not. You also determine if you push your own goals to the side to help someone else or if you mingle the two in a way to be productive on both. What you make a priority and how you set up your schedule is how you get things done. How long your goals take is up to you.


There will always be other things that will take your focus away from your own goals. It’s up to you whether or not you mingled them together or say no at this time. You are in control of your life and each day what you accomplish. How distracted you become of challenges and situations that come your way is totally up to you. Knowing your limits, your stress triggers and how to best deal with them when they do arise is part of being in control of your own life and your own focus.


Are you afraid to tell someone no when asked if you can help? Have you analyzed out if you could help but in a limited way? Have you made other suggestions to help them when you couldn’t? Leave me a comment below on how you deal with things that pop up in you life and requests made that you feel obligated to do. Look forward to hearing from you. Do me a favor and share this with anyone that you feel is dealing with similar struggles.


Have a blessed week!



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(2) comments

Nicole March 2, 2016

Another fantastic blog with very useful tips. Thanks Lisa!

Arianne Peterson March 10, 2016

Great post with helpful advice and honest real life application of just being human with similar situations. My immediate family is all March birthdays, somehow it falls on me that there is an expectation for me to bless their special day. I put it as a blessing because that’s how I have to shift my focus or words surrounding it to avoid getting upset. I will often use humor to help me decompress on these situations. If I can find something funny about it, then it gives me breathing room to decide how to respond. I think like you say, we have to figure out what may or may not work for us. It’s the old “love your neighbor” that makes doing for me feel selfish at times. I have had to learn that just because I can doesn’t mean I should. If I have a 30 min drive home from work am I obligated to be on the phone with friends or family? What if that time is good for me to listen to a podcast that bolsters my dream building or my playlist of music that helps me clear my head?.. just because I can take people’s calls doesn’t mean that I should. Thank you for helping me add to my list of “How to Say No!”.. sometimes it is even about how to have the actual conversation. I used to explain myself a lot that by thinking someone will then understand and let me off the hook of their want, or expectation or their request of me. Sadly I have found that doesn’t always work, sometimes people just need to hear “no”.. done. When you explain yourself it gives them liberty to choose to tell you how they can find a way to manipulate what they want from you out of your situation. I have become better at sharing less, which used to feel unnatural for me to withhold. I had to tell myself it’s not withholding in a way that I am hurting them or lying or keeping secrets, but this is not necessary information. Boy I tell you.. been a learning process. Thanks for helping me in this journey!

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