Sep 16, 2016
It looked like a zombie apocalypse.
I was driving through downtown Lexington, Kentucky one Saturday night and they were walking in herds of ten or more. All staring at their smart phones, wandering aimlessly, bumping into lamp posts, grunting and pointing.
Frightened, I called my 25-year-old son and explained that I was afraid to stop or get out of the car. His laughter had me teetering on offended vs. relieved.
“They’re looking for Pokeman, dad.”
“Poke-who?”, I returned.
He went on to educate his old man on the new craze.
The upside is that folks were getting together, getting off the couch, and getting out to explore and move around. That’s cool and exciting, and something I do a lot; just not with my smart phone.
The downside is that it is a considerable distraction if pursued with abandon, and distraction from anything that moves one toward a meaningful and worthwhile goal is very expensive.
Life is a bit like the street hustle game of three card monte. There are countless invisible influences at work to grab your attention, keep your senses fascinated, then take your watch.
While millions of Wells Fargo customers were chasing Pokeman, watching the Kardashians or trolling the malls, their bank reps were opening accounts they weren’t even aware of, then siphoning their hard earned money through fees of all sorts.
Alarmingly, the three biggest banking behemoths in the U.S., JP Morgan Chase (JPM), Bank of America (BAC) and Wells Fargo (WFC) raked in $5.1 billion from overdraft fees alone in 2015.
The lesson here is to simply pay attention to what matters most. Your health, relationships, faith, time and money.
Make peace with the fact that your brain is a serial processor and can only pay attention to one thing at a time.
Choose what you focus on, what you allow to distract you, and what you set and forget, with extreme care.
For free tools (admittedly and deliberately low tech) that will ensure you’re never a victim of the distraction game with your personal finances, go here.