6 techniques to improve concentration
It is not easy to dedicate 100% of our attention to a single task when our environment is an inexhaustible source of distraction. Fortunately, small techniques allow us to reset the brain and regain our forgotten efficiency.
We live in the age of inattention. Texting, emails, online ads, notifications, social media, and thousands of other distractions keep us from focusing on a specific task. The result: Sometimes we get frustrated when we need to focus on our work or our to-do list. The good news is that there are ways to improve our ability to focus despite technology, the talk of colleagues, and the hustle and bustle around us.
Five minutes of intense exercise before concentrating on the task at hand can "reset" the brain. Incorporating physical activity into your daily routine is very useful to combat distractions.
We all think that we can handle multiple tasks at once. But in reality, only a small percentage of the population gets there. Most people change from one activity to another wasting time. Focusing on one task at a time makes us more efficient.
Meditation improves your ability to concentrate because it allows you to work on letting go of thoughts and breathing. If you must tackle a task that requires concentration, meditate for five minutes before beginning.
Cut the day
Try to establish a very clear sequence of events so you don't waste time making decisions. Do you want to maximize your productivity? Use a timer and set it for 25 minutes to divide the work into intervals separated by short breaks. When the bells ring, give yourself five minutes to drink tea or stretch your legs.
While being in constant contact with people online can be a distraction, regular doses of positive human contact improve focus. Instead, go for an offline exchange, in "real" life. A smile, a hug, a walk, and a warm conversation reduce stress and help us focus better.
Managing stress is extremely important when it comes to focus. Stress hormones (adrenaline and cortisol) are designed to make our bodies fight or flee. But it does mean that the brain does not function as well as when it is free from its anxieties. Sleeping seven to eight hours a night, exercising regularly, meditating and eating well are actions that improve our lifestyle and our minds.