“Hmmm…what was I just thinking about?”
Does that phrase run through your head several times a day? The busier you become, the more likely you will be asking yourself that same question over and over and OVER again. It’s a fact of life in our modern and highly distracted world.
Finding focus is difficult.
Neuroscientist Adam Aron from the University of California San Diego found that the subthalamic nucleus (STN) — the brain system that is involved in interrupting or stopping movement in our bodies — also interrupts cognition and appears to clear out whatever you were thinking at that moment. In a less hurried world, this function of the brain served an important role when we were confronted with danger and needed a fight or flight response. Today, in our fast-paced society, it has negative consequences.
“Clearly this happens all day long to us,” says Aron. “We get distracted, but that’s everyday life. Unfortunately, there’s a big cost to that when it comes to focus, and it’s increasing in this world.”
How can you regain focus? Here are a few ways to help you reach that increasingly hard-to-reach goal:
1. Meditate: A study from Emory University found that 20 minutes of daily meditation is associated with activity and connectivity changes in the region of the brain that controls attention, allowing you to disengage from distraction.
2. Turn Down the Buzz: Turn off audible devices to eliminate the distraction of texts and unimportant phone calls. Also, turn off notifications on your social media outlets such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
3. Forget Multitasking: Multitasking can weaken your ability to focus on one thing. Multitasking decreases concentration by as much as 20-40%. Brain activation is reduced up to 53% when we are asked to perform dual tasks versus being able to devote our attention to just one task.
Read more tips here: https://goo.gl/Z8Vn7L