You might wish you had more focus if you have ever struggled to complete a difficult task at work, study for an exam, or worked on a complicated project.
Concentration is the mental effort that you put into whatever you are learning or working on. Sometimes it’s confused with attention span. However, attention span is the amount of time that you can focus on one thing at a time.
Factors that influence concentration
There are many reasons attention span and concentration may vary. Some people have difficulty focusing and ignoring distractions. Concentration can be affected by age and sleep deprivation.
Memory loss can lead to memory loss. Most people forget more things as they get older. Concussion and other brain injuries such as head or brain traumas can affect concentration.
When you try to focus but can’t, it’s easy for frustration to set in. This can lead to stress or irritation which makes focusing on the task at hand seem distant.
Continue reading if this sounds familiar. We will be discussing research-backed techniques to improve concentration. We will also discuss conditions that may affect concentration, and what steps you can take if this doesn’t work.
7 Tips to Increase Concentration
1. Spend Time in Nature
You can increase your concentration naturally by getting outside every day, even if it’s only for 15 to 20 minutes. A short walk in a park might be a good idea. You can also benefit from sitting in your backyard or garden. Any environment can have benefits.
The positive effects of natural environments are being supported by increasing scientific evidence. Research by 2014 Trusted Source has shown that plants can be used in offices to increase productivity and concentration, workplace satisfaction, and air quality.
You can add a few plants to your home or workspace for many benefits. If you don’t have the green thumb, succulents are great options for low-maintenance plants.
2. Eliminate Distractions
It may seem obvious, but people underestimate how many distractions can distract them from their task. These intrusions could be a loud radio or an annoying co-worker that constantly visits your cubicle to talk.
It’s not always easy to reduce distractions. It might seem as easy as turning off the TV or radio. However, it can be much more difficult to deal with an interruption from a spouse, child or coworker.
You can deal with this by setting aside a time and place and asking to be left alone for that time. You can also seek out calm places where you are able to work unassisted. You might also consider a library, your own private space, or a quiet coffee shop.
To minimize or eliminate internal distractions, you can use a few strategies: Make sure you’re well rested before you start the task; and use positive thoughts imagery to combat anxiety and worry. You can consciously focus your attention on the task at hand if your mind drifts to distracting thoughts.
3. Limit Your Focus
Multitasking might seem like a great way of getting a lot done in a short time, but it turns out people are not very good at it. Multitasking can significantly reduce productivity and make it harder to focus on the important details.
Your attention is like a spotlight. You can clearly see what is going on if you focus your spotlight in one area. You might only see the shadowy edges if you tried to spread that light in a large dark space.
Maximizing your resources is a key part of improving mental focus. Instead of multitasking, focus your attention on one task at a time.
4. Live in the Moment
It is difficult to remain mentally focused when you are thinking about the future, worrying about it, or tuning out of the moment for another reason.
Most people have heard of the importance of being present. It is all about getting rid of distractions (e.g., your mobile phone), and being present in the moment.
It is important to be present in order to regain your mental focus. Engaging in the present moment keeps your attention sharp, and your mental resources focused on the important details at any given time.
Although it may take time, you can learn to live in the present. While you cannot change the past or the future, what you do today will help you avoid making the same mistakes in the future and can pave the way for a better future.
5. Practice Mindfulness
The topic of mindfulness is hot right now. Although mindfulness meditation has been practiced for thousands of years, the many health benefits it offers is only now being understood.
One study involved researchers having human resource professionals simulate the complex multitasking they do every day. 1
These tasks required that you complete them in less than 20 minutes. They included answering phones, scheduling meetings and writing memos based on information from multiple sources, including phone calls, emails and text messages.
Participants received training in mindfulness meditation for 8 weeks. The results showed that only those who received this training had improved their concentration and focus.
The meditation group members were able stay on task longer, switch between tasks less often, and did the work better than other participants.
While mindfulness may require you to learn how to meditate, it is also possible to practice mindfulness by simply doing a quick deep breathing exercise.
6. Take a Short Break
Did you ever try to concentrate on one thing for an extended period of time? Your focus begins to deteriorate and it becomes increasingly difficult to dedicate your mental resources to the task. Your performance suffers as a consequence.
While psychology has traditionally suggested that this could be due to a depletion of attentional resources, some psychologists believe it is more likely to do with the brain’s tendency not to pay attention to sources of stimulation.
You should take a break from time-consuming tasks like studying for exams or preparing taxes.
You can shift your focus to something that is not related to the task at hand for a short time. These brief moments of rest might help you keep your mind sharp and boost your performance when you need it.
7. Keep Practicing
It takes time to improve your mental focus. Professional athletes need to practice and take time to improve their concentration.
Recognize the negative impact distractions have on your life. You can’t achieve your goals if you get distracted by trivial details. It is time to place more value on your time.
You will be able to achieve more by focusing your mental energy on the things that bring you joy, success, and satisfaction.
Also Read :- How to Stay possitive in Life
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