A distraction is something that takes your attention away from what you're supposed to be doing. If you just can't keep from checking your email every ten seconds, that's a distraction that's going to interfere with doing your homework.

A distraction can also be a pleasant break. If you're worried about your dance recital tomorrow, watching a mindless action flick may be a welcome distraction that helps you relax. Has anyone ever told you, "You're driving me to distraction"? When you're driven to distraction, you're so agitated you feel like you're going crazy. Distraction comes from the Latin dis-, "apart," and trahere, "drag." So distraction is when you're dragged away from your task or from your worries.

Definitions of distraction

n the act of distracting; drawing someone's attention away from something

Type of:
alteration, revision
the act of revising or altering (involving reconsideration and modification)

n an obstacle to attention

Type of:
lack of attention

n mental turmoil

“he drives me to distraction
Type of:
confusedness, confusion, disarray, mental confusion, muddiness
a mental state characterized by a lack of clear and orderly thought and behavior

n an entertainment that provokes pleased interest and distracts you from worries and vexations

Type of:
amusement, entertainment
an activity that is diverting and that holds the attention

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