Arnold in grass

Praying to God and studying his word are vital parts of our walk with God, yet sometimes it can be pushed to one side because we have so much else to do. Or when we do finally sit down to do it, we just can’t seem to focus – we get pulled in every different direction and nothing gets done. So, how do we stop getting distracted? Here are some of my top tips to stop getting distracted!

Schedule your time

We all have busy lives, whether you’re at school, college, university, working, keeping a home, raising children, whatever you’re doing – I know very few people who have lots of free time to just sit around doing nothing. So, the best way to ensure that we do the praying and bible study that we want, is to schedule our time. To plan out an appointment with God – and stick to it! Add it to your calendar if you like. My uncle had his time for prayer saved in his calendar on his phone every single day, and this is such a good idea because it means we can’t plan anything else in this time and it just feels more official, like it needs to be stuck to just like a doctor’s appointment or a meeting.

Get rid of other people

Once you’ve scheduled your time with God, then you need to sort out the other people. Whilst you are having your time with God, what is everyone else doing? Whoever it is that you live with, tell them that during this specified time you are busy and shouldn’t be distracted. If you can, make sure that they have something else to be doing during that time so they’re not bothering you with questions or wanting to spend that time with you. Obviously, this is different if you choose to pray and study the Bible together which is also a fab idea! If you have small children, this does of course become more difficult and you need to be a tad more flexible. But can you choose a time whilst they’re asleep? Or whilst someone else is able to look after them for a little while?

Have a plan

If I don’t have an idea of what I want to be doing during my time with God, I always spend a good 15 minutes flicking between about 6 different ideas and wasting time. Are you going to study the Bible? Are you going to pray? Are you going to sing? What are you reading? How are you studying the Bible? Are you writing things down? Are you meditating on a passage? Plan out exactly what it is you want to do and follow your plan. If you get really into something and feel like you’re really connecting with God through it, by all means stick with that! This isn’t a strict regimented plan, it’s there to guide you through and make the decisions for you to stop you getting distracted. Some good ways to do this could be following a bible reading or study plan, following a devotional or having a routine that you follow every time.

Make it fun!

When deciding on your plan for your time with God, make it fun! This isn’t a chore we have to do, spending time with God is a gift, something we are privileged to be able to do. It should be enjoyable – so work out what is best for you. Is it going for a walk? Is it writing notes? Is it making art? Is it singing or listening to music? Try out different ideas and see which help you to meet with God best for you! If it’s fun, you are going to want to do this and are much less likely to get distracted!

Choose a space

Where you spend your time with God does make a difference to how distracted you’re going to be. You want to choose somewhere you feel comfortable, where you’re not going to be pestered, where you can’t see things that you know are going to distract you (laundry that needs doing, the pile of papers that need sorting, a kitchen that needs cleaning). This is really whatever works best for you – wherever helps you to meet with God.

Create your environment

After you’ve chosen your space, you will want to create your environment to help you meet with God. What kind of sound do you want? Silence, music, a podcast? Top tip: no matter how much you like having the TV on in the background whilst doing other work, it’s just really not helpful when trying to avoid distractions! Make your space comfy – do you have cushions, blankets, a fan (it was snowy a month ago and now I’m boiling who knows what you’ll need!)?

The phone dilemma

Deciding what to do with your phone is always a tricky one. On one hand, they can be a huge distraction as the temptation is always there to have a quick flick through my fabulous Instagram feed… check on your emails, read about 20 news articles you’re pretty sure are fake or reminisce over old holiday photos. But, they can also be so helpful – the Bible App has some great bible reading plans to follow, you can google words to check what they mean or you can find out what other people think about a reading. My personal solution to this is to have my phone to use, then sit on it when I’m not using it. This way I’m physically stopping myself from flicking through anything, and I’m not distracted by notifications flashing up in the corner of my eye.

Have everything close by

My final tip to stop getting distracted is probably the one that has made the biggest difference for me personally. Making sure that I have everything I could possibly need within arm’s reach means I have no need to get up and wander around the fetch things. Not only does this mean I’m not wasting time getting things, but it also means I stay focused and don’t lose my trail of thought. So, what do you need? I always make sure I have: Bible, notepad, prayer journal, pens, highlighters, spare pens, a drink, snacks if I’m feeling peckish and extra layers if it’s getting cold!

 

So, these are my top tips to stop getting distracted from your time with God, I hope they’re helpful for you and definitely leave me a comment if you have any tips of your own for avoiding distractions! Connecting with God through prayer and reading the Bible is so important for our relationship with him so we should be doing all we can to help ourselves avoid distractions that pull us away from this.

 

Prayer:

Dear God, thank you that we can meet with you in prayer and through reading your word. Thank you that you listen to us and that we can hear from you. Help us to prioritise our time with you, help us to avoid the distractions of our daily lives and help us to seek you first, before anything else. Amen.

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5 Comments

  1. Prescott Williamson

    This was the hardest for me to do so I made sure every morning as soon as I woke up was my time to get my day right. The biggest key was being intentional and finally asking myself “how important is God to you” and acting on that. Thanks for this

    1. This is such an important point! Intentional is basically my favourite word, I use it so much when talking about prayer and reading the Bible etc. You definitely need to know the reason WHY you want to be spending time with God. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thank you for sharing these tips! Prayer has always been something I struggle with and get distraction is a key part of that struggle. I recently found a good prayer app for my phone. It’s actually pinned to the bottom and serves as a good reminder to stop and pray!

    1. That’s great – what app do you use? I haven’t found many apps that I like for prayer so far!

  3. I love your comment that time with Godnisnt a chore but a gift. It’s so important to remember that always. ???

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