In today’s world, we’re constantly flooded with distractions from a constant barrage of emails, 24-hour TV news cycles, and scrolling through social media accounts. All of which can make staying focused downright impossible.
I’m sure you noticed these interruptions have little to do with what’s most important to you. (When’s the last time a news alert on your smartphone really made your life any better?)
But the good news is, you can actually reduce your own. In fact, it’s a skill that can easily be cultivated. And doing so isn’t just good for your productivity—it’s also excellent for your overall health.
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The truth is, our ability to pay attention has limitations.
Knowing this, businesses have been drastically increasing their advertising spending—to the tune of $263 billion in 2020 (up from $183 billion in 2015)—to capture your attention.
But the problem is, the moment your attention is captured—or maybe “hijacked” is more accurate—you’re no longer using your precious energy for what’s most important to you.
So, if want to kick these “mental hijackers” to the curb—mindfulness can help. Mindfulness is paying attention to the present moment with awareness and without emotional reactivity. In other words, observe without judgment.
And a multitude of studies show that simple mindfulness exercises can positively affect brain health.
A 2019 study showed that even brief daily mindfulness sessions—less than 15 minutes per day—can offer major benefits including:
And according to Dr. Amishi Jha, Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Miami, people who regularly do mindfulness exercises find that their attention actually gets better over time.
Easier said than done right?
Not necessarily! That’s why I want to show you a simple exercise that can help you tune in to the present moment, starting right now.
Here’s a simple technique you can do anytime to help quiet the external “noise” of distractions and shift your focus to what matters most to you
In this exercise, you’ll combine slow deep breathing and mindful attention to your body with vagus nerve stimulation.
Here’s how to do it:
I encourage you to try out this exercise to not only improve your attention, but also reduce stress—especially in these trying times.
Here’s to investing more of your moments into what matters the most.
Paying Attention: The Attention Economy: https://econreview.berkeley.edu/paying-attention-the-attention-economy/
Brief, daily meditation enhances attention, memory, mood, and emotional regulation in non-experienced meditators