Sometimes, it can be really difficult to focus on a task at hand. This can be frustrating especially when it affects the quality of work. The task can also take too long to accomplish, slowing down efficiency.
The inability to concentrate is not permanent. The brain can be likened to a muscle: the more it is trained, the stronger it gets. By engaging in activities that need concentration, the brain is maintaining the ability to focus for longer periods. By making it a habit to train the brain, people improve their cognitive abilities.
Are you struggling with focus and concentration? Fortunately, there are a lot of exercises that you could try to help train your brain. Keep in mind that you might need to invest a few bucks to make some of these activities a success. For instance, using a Zafu meditation cushion can really improve the results of your meditation sessions.
1. Solving Puzzles
Aside from being entertaining, puzzles help stimulate the mind and keep the brain sharp. Solving puzzles has many benefits, like improving concentration, reducing the risk of memory disorders, and increasing brainpower. It also puts a person’s problem-solving skills to the test, further developing them in the process of solving.
Crossword, fill-it-ins, Sudoku, and word searches all contribute to training the mind. Even spending just 15 minutes a day solving (or trying to solve) puzzles can make a big impact. Solving puzzles requires concentration, and if done regularly, it can help individuals focus on tasks.
For kids, something as simple as jigsaw puzzles can help form their cognition and processing skills. Adult coloring books also improve concentration because they require patience and effort. Memory tends to decline with age, and it won’t hurt to try brain-training games every now and then.
In itself, meditation is an activity of training the mind to focus on emotional health and self-awareness. It has plenty of advantages aside from improving mindfulness. In redirecting the thoughts to let go of stressors, you develop concentration too.
Some people don’t want to give meditation a try because they don’t know how to keep still. They only prove the point that they need to develop better concentration habits. Aside from meditation and yoga, some people find that exercise motivates them to keep their minds fixed on something.
Mindfulness meditation improves the ability to reorient the focus toward the goal. Having a short attention span may reflect the constant need to keep the mind stimulated. By making time for some peace and quiet, you train the brain to relax.
3. Target Shooting
In shooting, there must be full concentration on the goal at hand. The individual must focus on using the equipment to reach the target. There is even a correct body posture and shooting stance before one can pull the trigger.
The activity requires single-mindedness, so doing it frequently can definitely train the mind and body to focus. Firing a gun also releases endorphins in the body, which can help a person feel relaxed. Those who do recreational shooting buy their own gun parts and accessories to help them focus. Because they are familiar with what they are using, they feel more secure and concentrated.
4. Picking Locks
Everyone has probably considered learning how to pick locks after accidentally losing or leaving the keys. There are proper methods on how to do it without destroying the lock. Mimicking the key by using hairpins or even a flat head screwdriver. Lockpicking requires patience, precision, and focus.
Of course, you don’t learn to lockpick for the purpose of causing harm to others. Still, a person who knows how to pick locks probably has more concentration and focus than most people do.
Repeatedly trying to bump each key pin in the right order requires full attention and a steady hand. Through trial and error, a person learns a skill that can come in handy sometimes.
5. Listening to Music
Having background music on while studying or working can be quite effective. However, some get distracted because they are playing songs that they know too well. Playing songs that they hate can also be distracting because the song is still too familiar.
Music has an effect on the mood and disposition, which maximizes the brain’s capabilities to focus. Some people use white noise, nature sounds, or classical music to keep them attentive. Songs without lyrics are best because the mind won’t be confused about where to focus.
The volume of the music also contributes to its overall effect. It should be loud enough to be encouraging and soft enough to not overpower the task at hand.
Taking Frequent Breaks Is Important
With any task, focusing for too long is not that good. There exists the Pomodoro technique, in which an individual focuses on a task and sets intervals for a break. This time-management method allows the mind to focus and not get antsy so easily.
Many methods and activities improve focus and concentration. A person just has to find which one works best for them and their interests.