deepstash

Beta

4 simple exercises to strengthen your attention and reduce distractibility

Deepstash brings you key ideas from the most inspiring articles like this one:

Read more efficiently

Save what inspires you

Remember anything

http://blog.ed.ted.com/2018/06/18/4-simple-exercises-to-strengthen-your-attention-and-reduce-distractibility/

blog.ed.ted.com

4 simple exercises to strengthen your attention and reduce distractibility
"I think, therefore I am distracted." If Descartes were writing today, this is what his famous aphorism might have become. We're living in an age of distraction, battered by our own customized waterfall of notifications, alerts, texts, videos, bingeable TV, and more. It's not surprising our minds often feel like a jumble.

3

Key Ideas

Save all ideas

Our attention is fragile

Research indicates our mind wanders 50 percent of our waking hours. Internal and external distractions easily disrupt our attention from the task at hand.

To gain control over our attent...

541 SAVES


What mindfulness is

It’s about paying attention to the present moment with awareness and without emotional reactivity.

588 SAVES


Mindfulness training

It can be broken down into two major categories:

  • Focused attention exercises cultivate your brain’s ability to focus on one single object, like one’s breath or walking.
  • Open moni...

677 SAVES


SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Mindfulness meditation

It is based on Buddhist traditions and it's described as "the non-judgmental awareness of experiences in the present moment."

Sit in a quiet place with your eyes closed, focusing on yo...

How meditation works

It  works through a combination of several distinct mechanisms:
  • Attention regulation. Focused attention for an extended period of time.
  • Body awareness. Paying attention to surroundings, thoughts and bodily sensations.
  • Emotion regulation. Learning to observe your thoughts and accept them without reactive judgment while refraining from the habitual response.
  • Change in perspective on the self. 

The hardships of stating focused 

We have trained ourselves to be continuously distracted and find it's hard to stop doing it.

  • Some are distracted because of sensory or visual processing problems, slow processing or me...

You can change your attention span

To get better at concentrating, start small.

  • Choose only one task or point of focus. Clear all other things away or shut them down.
  • Look at your environment. Do you work better in silence or with ambient noise? Is your chair comfortable enough?
  • You can also train yourself to be more mindful by focusing on your breath or any other sensation for three minutes.

Be compassionate with yourself

If you're distracted because of internal turmoil, be kind to yourself. Remind yourself that's what's going on. Talk about it to someone or just to yourself.

If you do get distracted, notice it and gently bring your attention back.

one more idea

Meditation fosters mindfulness

“[Meditation] is not about clearing the mind; it’s about focusing on one thing. When the mind wanders, the meditation isn’t a failure. Our brain is like a wayward puppy, out of cont...

Incorporate meditation in your life

  • Walking meditation. “We weren’t meant to sit in cubicles all day and when we disconnect from nature, we suffer a lot of stress.”
  • Red light meditation. While stopped at a red light, turn off your radio and focus on deep breaths.
  • Running/cycling meditation. If you run or bike, leave your headphones at home and focus on the experience.
  • Eating/drinking meditation. As you eat or drink, focus on the various flavors, textures, and sensations of the particular food or drink.
  • Waiting meditation. While in line, observe your breath or surroundings.
  • Task-related meditation. For example, washing your hands, folding laundry, taking a shower, washing dishes, or brushing your teeth can serve as mini-meditations if you focus on the experience and stop your mind from wandering.