Want more focus? Here’s where to start
How to improve focus
Every been told you need to focus better? Or need to pay attention? Everyone reading this at one point or another has had others or themselves remark about how they need to pay attention or focus better. Focus is a popular topic, people know its importance but often don’t know how to get better at it, and the first step is understanding it. This month I am going to spend some time looking at focus in depth, starting with introducing it and busting a couple myths about it.
Myth #1: We technically never lose focus, when we are at practice and the coach is talking and we are day dreaming or thinking about something else, we are still focusing but our focus is not where it should be. Performance is all about focusing on the right thing at the right moment. So understand that if you are making mistakes due to focus, it is not because you need to regain it or develop it, it is more that you are probably not focusing where you should be at key moments. This can because of a number of different reasons, which will be covered more in depth in future posts, but often it is because we are focusing on negative thoughts, worry, future events, past mistakes, over analyzing, rather than just being in the moment.
Myth #2: Rest = lower productivity. Our minds need rest. We need to rest our mind, beyond sleep, in order to focus better. Without rest our minds will burn out, and our productivity will go down. We may not be aware of it, but the amount of focus we can bring will decrease over time if we don’t give our minds proper rest. There is a difference in intensity of focus. The more intense our focus the deeper we can go and the more we will get out of the time we spend. The greatest minds in the world know this, they understand how to get the most out of their mind, and understand the amount of rest it needs in order to do so. Part of this is understanding the different between shallow and deep work. Many things we do on a daily basis are not important but require focus, and first train our minds to focus less effectively and second take energy away from being able to focus on what is important.