Managing your attention is within your power. Fixating your attention will help you to tap into flow experience. And it is its fundamental spice.
Yes, attention nowadays has a significant deficit.
As I am writing this post, my phone is ringing, my roommates are talking in the room and I receive some e-mail spam.
You might not be writing a blog post, but you get the point. concentration is getting harder and harder with each year, new applications are being created and more and more technology emerges. Sometimes being at your favor while others even consume your free time. Notification creates our mind to wander from our current task (ex, you reading this post). It is funny, but on average studies show that our focus is dropped on the level of a goldfish – approximately 9 sec.
Keeping a Laser-sharp Focus
Being able to demand your focus at hand is a critical asset. It makes the person sharper and more apt to solve whatever problem or task he has to do.
Attention is the reason of our poor decisions. Bad focus leads to bad decisions!
Sounds like we have a lot of work to do. I am in this trap as well, nobody is covered. What is profound here to understand is that attention is like a muscle. If you tend to watch meaningless TV shows and browse randomly on social media it will start to shrink. On the other hand, if we commit to deliberate practice on focusing we can start getting sharper.
- Just ignore them! Ignorance is a bliss, in some forms.
In this context, it may serve us very well. A way to increase your productivity is by managing your priorities. But wait I do not mean putting numbers on your to-do list. Just evaluate all of them, pick one and that is your current Priority. The word is meant to be singular.
- Blocking time.
The way to do it is by planning time where and when are you going to do the task. Very simple, but the key is to be consistent, in case you are doing some repetitive training. You probably do want to work on that priority all day, but if you have some other tasks we can do multiple time blocks. And for every each one of them you will have a different task, again with top number one priority.
- The third tip I want to share on the subject is meditation.
I have already made one post for it, you can check it here. The continuous practice of meditation has a proven effect on our focus and concentration abilities. However, it doesn’t have an instant pill effect. It takes a time investment. And a proper way to manage you expect to have none. Meditation gurus are preaching for faith in the process. Faith, I consider a requirement for every learner on his journey to mastery. Otherwise, why have you started at first place doing whatever you want to learn?
No Homework, Just Recommendation
There is an excellent book by Daniel Goleman, called “Focus”. He is a New York Times bestselling author more famous with the book “Emotional Intelligence”. In it, he defines the focus and the actual processes in our brain how we tend to lose or retain it.
Attention is the new currency of this era.
It is the companies and the people getting the most eyeballs, who profit the most. And it isn’t only about profit and money. It is really about the impact on humanity in general. We tend to have these collective cultural preferences about the things we care more or less. It is a groupthink in some cases. And yet there are some people who somehow breakout this traps and create whatever they are striving for. You have the choice to get your power back by acknowledging it first. And then retain it by focus.
What do you choose?