7 Tips For Improving Your Focus
The ability to switch your brain into the desired gear and truly focus on a task at hand is an important one. As our minds become more and more swamped by the overstimulation embedded in this modern digital culture, concentration is often negotiated. The number of Americans with ADD (or ADHD) might be as high as 10%, but environmental factors that impact our ability to focus affect all of us. Without honed focus skills, the brain is chaotic; it is a machine running without a mission. Our ability to meditate, accomplish our goals, and live peacefully is largely dependent on how well we can focus when we need to. If you’d like to improve your overall quality of life, begin incorporating these tips for better focus into your daily routine today.
1. Exercise. Exercise has been proven to enhance focus, even in people who have been diagnosed with ADHD. Physical movement is thought to release chemicals into the brain that impact our ability to learn and remember.
2. Stay Offline When You Wake Up And Before Bed. Taking time away from the computer, specifically email, has been shown to improve focus. A good rule of thumb is to stay off of the computer (and yes, this includes your smartphone) for the first hour and the last hour of your day.
3. Stay Hydrated. Research has shown that even a small amount of dehydration can affect our ability to pay attention. You might not necessarily become thirsty when you are only slightly dehydrated, so be sure to drink water regularly throughout your day as a part of your routine.
4. Sleep Enough. A lack of delta sleep can often cause problems with focus. If you aren’t sleeping at least seven hours a night regularly, you are probably not getting the kind of delta sleep you need. Researchers recommend getting an average of seven to nine hours of sleep a night for optimal focus.
5. Streamline Your Tasks. Whether you keep appointment reminders and to-do lists on paper or digitally, put them all in one place. Create a method that will show you the time for your morning meeting, remind you to pick up wine for your date, and keep you on track with doctor appointments all at once. If you keep your professional and personal task lists separate, you are setting yourself up for hampered concentration.
6. Meditate. Meditation is pointed mindfulness and the more you meditate, the better you get at harnessing your own mindfulness. Meditation teaches us how to listen and focus and meditating regularly can help us to practice focus and mindfulness more efficiently when not meditating.
7. Take A Closer Look At Your Goals. One of the reasons people lose their ability to focus so quickly is because they are overwhelmed by the size of the projects they have to do. Instead of putting a large task on your daily to-do list, like “write novel,” break your big tasks into the smallest portions possible and address your big tasks one small issue at a time. “Write novel” is too intimidating of a task to have on any to-do list. “Set up interview” or “research town history” are much more approachable small tasks that are involved in writing a novel. Approach all of your big tasks this way.