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The Focus Effect


manduka mat

Photo by Tiffany Assman

Arms tremble, muscles burn as I lower my torso to the mat and slowly, shakily press back up.

The foam fitness mat upon which countless others have sweated blurs before my eyes as the familiar sting of tears invades the privacy of a moment meant only for myself and my breath.

I continue on in this mindless pattern; lowering, pressing up, burning, repeat.

Ah, c’mon lads! Where’s your head?! Get it the game and move to the next circuit, so!!

The angry lilt in the trainer’s voice jolts me back to reality and I begin to ponder his question as the sweat continues to pour.

Where’s your head?

Where’s your head?

Where’s your head?

This moment; this day my head is a million places other than in this gym, on this mat.

It’s at home with a sick little girl. With friends with a terminally ill child. With the hurting family member. The job lost. The car crashed. The marriage on the rocks. So many of those I love are hurting so immensely and today it is just. too. much.


As I round the circuits in this fog of worry and doubt I fight to reign in the physical. To beat it into submission to perform. But it won’t. It is weak. Weary. Protesting.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the side effects of worry! It’s a powerful drug, capable of rendering even the strongest weak. In every sense of the word. It tears down the mind. Littering it with trash and garbage and other people’s unwanted baggage.

It shreds the soul making the iron-clad promises of a loving God seem full of holes like a crochet quilt that lets more cold air in than it keeps out. It makes truth seem false.

And it weakens the body. Strength that was there yesterday is eerily absent today. All energy reserved for fighting the losing battle of what if and should have and if only and why and why not.


Where I choose to place it makes all the difference in the world. But more importantly, and more immediately, makes all the difference in my life.

(I ask for your grace as I over-extended the time constraint this week. If you’ve been around here very long, you know that writing is therapy. And release. And often times enlightenment. So thank you for allowing me the privilege of processing here.)

I love Fridays when I get a chance to link up with LisaJo and hundreds of others from around the world for the crazy free-write that is Five Minute Friday!

I’m also linking this post up with Womanhood With Purpose, The Better Mom, Growing Home

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7 Responses to “The Focus Effect”

  1. RaZella says:

    I can relate to this, in so many ways. And I agree with your final sentences on this post. It does certainly make all the difference. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts.

  2. Cassi says:

    So true, the side affects of focusing on worry is so many. Great post

  3. juliesunne says:

    What we focus on does indeed make all the difference for our lives. Thanks for the great reminder.

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