I feel a sudden clear focus and perspective. There is no time for anything inessential. I must focus on myself, my work and my friends. I shall no longer look at “NewsHour” every night. I shall no longer pay any attention to politics or arguments about global warming.
This is not indifference but detachment — I still care deeply about the Middle East, about global warming, about growing inequality, but these are no longer my business; they belong to the future. I rejoice when I meet gi...
OK, Nicole, while you’re lying still, move your eyes around the room. Even without moving your head, you can see the lamp over on the table. Now look over at your baby pictures. See them? Now look at the bookcase. Can you see the big Harry Potter book there? Now look back at the lamp. Do you see how you have the power to focus your attention all over this room? That’s what I want to teach you about, but we’re going to focus your attention on what’s going on inside your mind and body. ...
An example of teaching a child how they can direct their attention at will.
When we are engaged in what we are
doing, all sorts of things happen. We
persist longer at difficult problems—and
become more likely to solve them. We
experience something that psychologist
Tory Higgins refers to as flow, a presence
of mind that not only allows us to extract
more from whatever it is we are doing but
also makes us feel better and happier: we
derive actual, measurable hedonic value
from the strength of our active
involvement in and attention to an activity,
even if the activi...
And it creates a cycle of enthusiasm as our accomplishments increase our positive outlook on the task, increasing our focus.
When psychologist Peter Gollwitzer
tried to determine how to enable people to
set goals and engage in goal-directed
behavior as effectively as possible, he
found that several things helped improve
focus and performance: (1) thinking
ahead, or viewing the situation as just one
moment on a larger, longer timeline and
being able to identify it as just one point to
get past in order to reach a better future
point; (2) being specific and setting
specific goals, or defining your end point
Peter Gollwitzer's rules for maintaining focus.