Everybody who prays the Rosary falls prey to distractions. Saints and the very pious can immerse in the mysteries and close themselves off from the world for their prayers. Many of us cannot do this and find real-world problems encroaching on our prayers, despite our best efforts.
The Association of the Miraculous Medal (AMM)offers advice about how to bring ourselves closer to Mary, Our Mother, and receive more spiritual benefits from the beautiful devotion.
Above all else, focus on the Rosary. Give this devotion it the respect it, and Mary, Our Mother, deserves. The AMM offers the following advice;
1) Choose both the time and the place that has least distractions for you.
2) You can stand, kneel, or sit—or if you are sick, you may lie down.
3) A family or a group—even two or three—can join together to pray the rosary.
4) Offer every rosary—or every decade—for your special intentions. If you are praying in a small group, you may wish to share prayerfully some of these intentions.
5) Say the rosary at a convenient rate of speed. Often you can pray the rosary aloud, even when you are alone.
6) Before beginning, ask Mary to help you pray devoutly. If you are distracted during the rosary, just continue.
7) If you have time and are so inclined, you can pause between decades for a private prayer, hymn, or reading.
8) The rosary is a meditation. Picture the scene in your imagination and try to enter in as one of the people there. See, hear, and feel what is said and done. Talk with Jesus and Mary. Compare the event with your own life.
9) If you are really busy, or if it is helpful, divide the rosary—one decade before breakfast, another at coffee break, and so on.
10) Use a blessed rosary. It is a sacramental of the Church, and the prayer carries an indulgence.
If one has a difficult time imaging the scene, use portraits of the scenes. The mysteries of the Rosary have always given artists inspiration. One an either use their computer or watch, and participate in, the Rosary on television- on channels such as EWTN, which shows beautiful and dramatic paintings.
One can also focus on some aspect of your faith which captures your attention. For me, a Rosary that has an icon of the union of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Immaculate Heart in the places for the “Our Father” gives me the focus I need and builds a barrier against unwanted thoughts.
Lastly, we can let the problem enter into our devotion and offer our prayers to the rectification of the issue. Most saints and Churchmen speak out against “willful” distractions. Willful distractions are issues that can easily be avoided; loud television, cooking or baking, or how our favorite teams are doing. The distractions of which I speak are critical things in our lives; mortgages, car payments, or sickness. My rationale is simple, we are going to bring these problems to God or Mary anyway, so why not bring them when we are most closely connected to our heavenly Mother, Mary.
Therefore, getting closer to Mary is easy. She is always waiting for us, her children. But we have to give her all due respect, and meet her halfway.