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Can't focus? Here are 6 techniques to help

Trataka - train your focus

Why can't we focus anymore? Why is it so difficult to focus on reading, studying, or thorough problem solving?

Well, we don't have a definitive answer, but there are some simple reasons why it's harder than ever to focus.

 

Fact #1: we process more information than ever.

According to researchers from the University of California-San Diego, we consume through our phones, laptops, TVs and all other devices about 34 GB of information per day.

The researchers say this leads to an information overload that hampers our focus and leads to constant interruptions that prevent us from reflection and deeper thinking.

 

Fact #2: filtering out information takes effort.

Contrary to common sense, ignoring things is not a passive mental process. Neuroscientists have found that it takes energy to ignore irrelevant stimuli.

It's not just about focusing better, but also about ignoring better.

 

Fact #3: we're being trained like mice by variable-ratio reward schedule.

Every like on social media, every notification, every email represents something new!!!

New is exciting for us. Every such message releases the neurotransmitter dopamine in our heads, making us feel good and adventurous.

What if my crush sent me a message?
What if I got that job?
What if a friend wants to meet up and hang?

Unlike in the past, now we carry with us devices that enable us to check if the above is true in about 3 seconds.

How are we then supposed to do work which may require serious mental effort when we have dopamine-candy within our reach almost 24/7?

 

So we process more information than ever, but filtering out the noise takes a lot of effort, and we're constantly being led astray from focus by dopamine-loaded interruptions.

No wonder we can't focus.

 

How to improve focus

Now let's dive in into the actionable part.

Given that ignoring is an active process, we'll suggest ways to both ignore noise better and focus better.

 

How to ignore better

 

How to improve concentration

Now that we have less to ignore, how to really hone in on work?

There you have it - 3 ways to ignore the noise better and 3 ways to train or enhance your focus.

Pick 1 and try it today!

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