Attention is not cheap. It is scarce, free to give away and costly. Heck, it is invaluable. Like oxygen, it is omnipresent. That makes it seem cheap. You will realise it only when you don’t have enough of it.
I remember asking my dad, “Why do we say, ‘pay attention’?”. What are we paying really. Well, I know now, that we pay quite a bit.
We let others pilfer it away. Or give trade it away for trifles. We won’t do that with stuff like money but attention is another matter. It’s of course a different matter that there are people making their money off our attention. Heck, there is an entire economy devoted to it.
We gladly give thinking we have an infinite amount of it. Wrong. Attention is scarce. It is fragmented. We need to protect it. Cracks come into into tight bonds when attention stands overdrawn. Depleted and worn.
When we pay for the unnecessary with our attention, we prey on our relationships. On ourselves.
Living by design is about being careful with where we let our mind go. There is one more reason that got me thinking about all of this.
You are what you pay attention to.
It is as simple as that. Think about that. That is the key to unlocking all your super powers!
There is so much going on in the world. Much allure and endless cacophony seem to make the meaningless the center of it all. Many who came in search of music have settled for non stop noise. Worse, we contribute to it too.
Filter failure, said Clay Shirky. “Its not attention overload but filter failure”. That is a strong influence on me and my thinking.
So, think about this. How strong are your filters? When did you last check? It’s like asking when did you last look at the locks of your vaults? Especially, because there have been so many break ins.