How To Improve Your Focus
“Concentrate all your thoughts upon the work at hand. The sun’s rays do not burn until brought to a focus.” -Alexander Graham Bell
In a world full of distractions where every single thing you know struggles to get your attention from family to media to work to your own self, then, focus becomes highly needed to achieving your goals and If you do not know how to place a balance between all of these distractions which are good but energy-sapping, you become overwhelmed and counterproductive. As you battle with these external distractions, the internal distractions of your mind are not left out.
Focus is like a mental muscle, the more you work on building it up, the stronger it gets and whatever has your attention, you give your greatest energy.
How do you then improve your focus in this highly distracted world to achieve your goals?
Below are 3 ways to help you improve your focus.
1. Have a plan
Based on the goals that you have set for yourself this new year, it is important that you have a plan to ensure that your daily activities contribute to your ultimate goal. Having a clear cut plan for the day helps you laser focus on the important tasks for the day and not distribute your energy all over the place without achieving any result.
Because the human mind has the ability to wander and draw your attention from your current task to a completely different task, giving it a direction by writing out your plan is important.
There are times when I am busy on a task and my mind just wanders from the work at hand to another task entirely different from what I have on my to-do list. Based on my priority, that task might be important but not urgent, so I write that thought down and reschedule to work on it at a later date. This scenario happens to almost every human.
2. Live in the moment
“The past is behind, learn from it. The future is ahead, prepare for it. The present is here, live it.” Thomas S. Monson
It is quite difficult for humans to stay mentally focused when ruminating on the past and worrying about the future. To live in the moment requires putting away distractions, internal or external, to be engaged in the current task. This improves our focus and helps us manage our energy. If yesterday is gone, you cannot assure yourself of tomorrow why not maximize today?
One of the powerful lines from Amanda Gorman’s poem The Hill We Climb, recited during Joe Biden’s inauguration is this “There is always light if only we’re brave enough to see it. If only we’re brave enough to be it” and this speaks to embracing the moment because truly, there is always light in every moment only if we choose to see it.
3. Practice mindfulness
“When walking, walk. When eating, eat”- Zen Proverbs
Mindfulness means being aware of everything that you do from when you wake up to when you retire to your bed at night. This means recognizing and releasing your external and internal distractions as they arise,(which includes decluttering your physical and mental environment) this way, mindfulness helps in increasing effectiveness, decrease mistakes and enhance creativity.
4. Take a break
Having breaks in between work helps you avoid burnout and overwhelm and at the same time prevents your mind from wandering here and there while working on the task at hand. When all these are eliminated, you are able to focus well on your given task.
Have you had any struggles with focusing? How did you handle it? Please share, someone here might need it.