How to find your focus
Do you think it is possible to retrain your brain? To go from a frazzled brain to a calm and focused brain that looks at the world with a more humbled outlook as opposed to fraught and dysfunctional.
The brain is a muscle, right? OK we all know it’s an organ, but it does play a huge role in controlling your muscles and like any muscle, you must train the brain as if it was a muscle. If you want to grow and change, what steps do you need take to do that?
Time to work it
The aim of retraining the brain is to help strengthen both mindfulness and attention. Tell me…. has your attention swayed during these short few sentences? How many times have you checked your phone, social media, emails? Be honest? Once, twice, three times?
It has been reported that your attention span in 2021 is now shorter than a goldfish, around 8 seconds. This is down from 12 seconds in the year 2000. Is this good? Is it bad? Whether good or bad, these stats don’t necessarily mean every task we carry out we only have 8 seconds of attention, our attention span is very much task dependent.
We are living in a world full of distractions and no more so than when we connect to digital media platforms; these are like a casino floor on steroids. So bright and tempting with those click bait ads that seem to know exactly what we are thinking; how do they do that?
We have a choice…click away with no thought or pause and create space to make a more mindful informed choice. This is where brain/mind training comes into play.
The Meditative Mind
We have been honouring our brain with a daily meditation practice that has over the past few months intensified and daily we notice greater space has been created in our minds despite our daily tasks not changing – we are still as busy as ever with the ‘to do’ list growing by the day.
Meditation enables you to relax your body and calm the mind all the while staying alert. The key principles of all meditations are to shift your attention from your thoughts to your immediate sensory experience.
Meditation is a daily practice; a daily exercise to help find focus but not to stop the thinking mind (that’s the nature of the brain unfortunately), more to create space for your thoughts by just accepting them for what they are and then letting go of them; this is the practice.
Thoughts like sound will eventually just sit in the background; you know they are there, but your mind won’t hold on to them, connect with them. Using a meditation object such as breath allows you to return to the ‘anchor’ when thoughts arise.
Finding your Meditative Mind
Mediation is your daily exercise; it’s something you should make time for whether that be for 5 minutes or 50 minutes any time allocated to calming the mind and relaxing the body is a positive for oneself.
- Be more present; focus on the now
- Relax the body
- Deliberately and mindfully calm your mind
- Focus your mind onto one thing (such as breath, visualisation, mantra, contemplation, energy centres, movement, body scan)
- When thoughts come in, gently accept them
- Treat yourself (& others) with loving kindness
The Magic Mind
Meditation helps create magic not only in the mind but body too. You become a more sensory being you have an inner peace that just radiates out of you, you sleep soundly, you wake refreshed, and you find yourself living in a blissful calm state.
You are feeding your mind with positive thoughts, stimulating your brain, and eliminating distractions and combined with proper fuelling you will master your brain and increase your focus.
Amanda is currently studying Meditation to bring greater awareness and mindfulness to not only herself but her tribe to help them all achieve plant-based endurance and lifestyle goals.