Distract is what you do when you draw someone’s attention — Hey! Look! Over there! Oh. Never mind. What was I saying? That’s right: distract is to draw attention away from what someone is doing.
Distract comes from the Latin word for “draw apart.” It can be annoying when someone or something distracts you. A loud car alarm or a talkative friend might distract you when you’re watching your favorite TV show. But being distracted is not always bad. Playing a round of miniature golf might distract you from feeling sad about the death of your parakeet.