It was once said that courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the choice you make in the face of fear. Similarly, focus does not exist in the absence of distractions – it exists in spite of them, Focus is a choice – a decision you make to maintain your “vision” regardless of the situation.
It is highly unlikely that you will ever be in an environment totally free of distractions. You can always count on something to be there to draw your attention, pick away at your resolve or make you second-guess your abilities, actions and intentions. Distractions – especially now – are going to be abundant.
Something like “am I fast enough?” or “I don’t think I am good enough” are basically self-induced distractions. We tend to create them to serve as a pre-failure excuse – to lessen expectations and soften the blow when you are not quite up to the challenge, because it might require too much of you.
Other distractions, like “I have never been here before” or “they are bigger than me” are especially relevant during football season. A field is a field, whether it is here in Mequon, or two hours away. Bigger does not necessarily equate with better – unless you let it. You can allow yourself to succumb to these types of issues, fail, and then make yourself feel good by excusing the outcome – with “I knew that would happen”.
On the other hand, you can steel your gaze and maintain your focus.
Everyone has this ability – it is factory installed. However, these gifts need to be exercised regularly. Your power to choose focus over distraction can become very strong when you consistently challenge doubt in all sizes– small, medium and gi-normous. Choosing to confront distractions, and then seeing them for what they usually are – doubt – will enable you to overcome, improve and grow.
Be courageous – stay focused.