The art of concentration

It probably often happens to you that when you try to focus on something, you start daydreaming. Concentration is useful for any mental activity, from reading through language learning to problem solving in mathematics.

When you lose concentration not only you don’t meet your deadlines, but your actions are also largely ineffective. If you learn how to effectively focus your attention on one task, you will gain time and your actions will be more productive. In this article, I will show you how to concentrate effectively. Let's start with the basics:

- Plan your actions. Without a specific plan, your mind will play tricks on you. You won’t be able to devote enough attention to only one task, because you won’t know the exact effects of your actions. From now on, always, when you get down to something, think about the effects of your action and the amount of time you want to spend on it. Decide, for example, that you’ll read 20 pages in half an hour and you’ll remember important points. At this point, whenever you lose concentration it poses a threat to your plan and the likelihood that you’ll fail considerably increases.

- Be well rested. Tiredness is the biggest enemy of concentration. When you're rested, it's easy to focus on one task. If you don’t have time for sleeping longer, try to take a nap. Even a 10 minute nap will have a beneficial influence on your concentration. To learn how to nap, read the article about the power of napping.

- Exercise. The brain, which is to focus on one task for a long time, needs increased blood flow containing large amounts of oxygen. If you don’t have time to practice every day and regularly, try to do some exercise before undertaking the task for which you need a lot of concentration. You will see that a dozen sit-ups and stretching your body will help you concentrate on your job.

- Take care of the work environment. Ask your family members not to disturb you while you’re working. Turn off the computer (and if you're working on it, turn off all the programs not related to your job). Try not to listen to music, unless it is instrumental only, no words. Ventilate the room and clean up your desk.

Below you’ll find some mental exercises. Concentration is a piece of cake when compared with them:

- Visualize. Relax and focus on one object. Think only about this very object for 10 minutes. Visualize in your mind, for example, a tangerine. Carefully see every detail of it and then peel it, eat it, smell it, taste it and feel its weight. If you come to realize that you start losing concentration, direct your thoughts to the tangerine and keep on visualizing it. Practice this once or twice a day with various objects or places and you’ll see that you concentration skills will improve after a few days.

- It’s best to perform the next exercise immediately prior to the activity for which we need concentration. Imagine a large wooden chest. Open the hard cover and start to put in it all the things that you have on your mind at that very moment. The form is optional. These can be images, inscriptions, single words or symbols of a particular idea or a problem. One by one, throw everything into the chest, then slam down the lid of the chest and padlock it. Then move away from the chest as far as possible. Say to yourself that as soon as you complete this task, which you’re about to undertake, you’ll take the chest back and you’ll calmly take care of everything what is in it. After this procedure you’ll have a clear mind and an increased ability to focus your attention.

- Synchronize cerebral hemispheres. This is a very useful thing, if you want to acquire the ability to concentrate when you want to. The exact description of hemispheric synchronization can be found in this article.

Let me know about your results!

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