Having trouble staying focused? Want to increase your powers of concentration?
Whether you’re a dedicated career executive or a stay-at-home parent, chances are you’ll find your mind unable to focus some times. Don’t fret, it’s normal.
The number one cause is stress and it has a lot of sources – lack of sleep, physical pain, money matters, over-scheduling, etc.
Here are some tips to keep your mind focused:
Before starting any work, have everything you need within reach. That way, once you start, you can do your work without interruption, without having to look for things or getting something from another part of the house or office.
Minimize multi-tasking. It’s great when you can do two things at the same time. But there are some tasks like accounting work or editing or sorting out important papers that need your full concentration to avoid making mistakes.
Doing jobs like these while the stew is boiling or the laundry is running or during traffic stops is no good. There’s a very big chance that one of them might end up not quite as complete as you want it.
Get a good meal. When you find yourself unable to focus already, chances are your body is telling you that it’s running on empty. Food is your fuel and without it, how do you expect to function properly? So eat what you can to raise your energy.
Move your body. A bit of exercise; a walk around the area; or a small chat with a friend can do wonders to rest your mind enough to re-focus on your work afterwards.
Close your eyes and catch a nap. Sleep a bit if you can – it might be short but the total shutdown of your mind will give it a much needed break. If a nap is not possible – say, while you’re in the office – then just take the time to daydream instead.
Do what you can not to think about what you need to do or finish. Instead, clear your mind – let your imagination take you back to a time when you felt really great or let it take you to your dream vacation, dream house etc. What’s important is you get to ‘leave’ your scrambled thoughts behind.
Stare at something soothing – a green wall, an aquarium, a waterfall. When your eyes relax, your brain does too. Everyone loses focus at times but those who know how to get it back immediately get exponentially more results and move quickly towards what they want…