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5 Ways To Focus On Being Mindful

Are you one to dwell on the past or worry about the future? Mindfulness brings you back to the present and is an excellent way to put everything into perspective and reduce stress. If you’re ever struggling to focus, being more mindful may just help. Here are 5 ways to focus on being mindful brought to you by Margarita Tartakovsky for Psych Central. She reviews a book called One Minute Mindfulness: 50 Simple Ways to Find Peace, Clarity, and New Possibilities in a Stressed-Out World by psychotherapist, Donald Altman.

One Minute Mindfulness: 50 Simple Ways to Find Peace, Clarity, and New Possibilities in a Stressed-Out WorldBring a dose of creativity to your workday.

Work no doubt takes up a large portion of our days. And no doubt the tasks can quickly become tedious. Fortunately, being mindful “can help you tap into a deeper sense of purpose and turn on the lamp of creativity,” Altman writes. He suggests striving to do one small creative thing at work or saying an affirmation, such as “The treasure of creativity is available to me at all times,” or “I let go of expectation and let creativity come to me.”

 Find pleasantness at work.

Altman notes that this is one of the most profound practices. “Pleasantness is an anchor that helps us center by locating the peace that is ever-present, even when it is hidden.” You can find pleasantness in a song, a sound, a scent or a blade of grass, he says. All you have to do is scan your surroundings. Altman also suggests bringing a pleasant object to work – such as a photo of a loved one – or having something portable with you at all times.

Continue reading the whole article here

I’m not sure these 5 ways to focus on being mindful are for everyone but the idea of mindfulness, I think, is important. We’re living in a fast-paced and competitive world, being bombarded with depressing news stories every day. I’ve pretty much stopped watching the news as it’s mostly negative and depressing – who needs that every day? I don’t. Mindfulness apparently helps to live in the present, remove all distractions, fears and anxieties. Click here to read more about mindfulness.



5 Ways To Focus With Meditation

If you’re a regular on this site you’ll have seen quite few posts on meditation. This is because it is a proven technique for focusing, reducing stress, anxiety, relaxation plus many other benefits. Here are 5 ways to focus with meditation written by Danielle Mika Nagel for The Huffington Post. If you’d like to read a quick article about the benefits of meditation, click here.  Here are two of my favourite points. To read them all, click on the link below the article.

Ways To Focus With Meditation1. Silence before email. 
Morning meditations give you a chance at clarity before your mind becomes busy with the thoughts and activities of the day. If your routine wakeup involves checking your inbox in bed, swap your mobile phone for a few minutes of morning silence. Have a comfortable cushion set up in a peaceful area of your home. Make it a habit to come to this spot before you do anything. Sit tall and allow yourself to focus on your breath. Deeply inhale, then deeply exhale. When a thought enters your mind, notice it, then return to your breath. Repeat this exercise for 10 minutes.

5. Move.
Whether you’re tied to your desk, stuck in traffic or caught in meetings, the average Canadian worker spends three quarters of the day sitting. The simple act of moving your body purposefully can be meditative. Go for a short run, do some simple yoga stretches or put on a song that motivates you to dance. The act of moving with intention will force you to get out of your head and into your body.

Continue reading whole article from The Huffington Post

I quoted these two points from the 5 ways to focus with meditation for a few reasons; checking email first thing in the morning can clutter up your work day at the best of times as the process immediately distracts you from your plan for the day (which you’ll have set the previous day before leaving work). You can get sucked in to hours of responding to emails, and before you know it, you’ve achieved very little. As per Tim Ferris’ The Four Hour Work Week (a great book!) turn off your instant delivery of emails and check them at two specific time slots; just before lunch and again at around 4pm.

Secondly, the notion that the simple act of moving can be meditative was interesting. We know that exercise is among the top best ways to focus, but for it to also act as a form of meditation gives it even more weight as an absolute necessity in your life if you want to focus and maintain an all-round healthy lifestyle too.




How To Focus On Healing An Illness

Here’s how to focus on healing an illness which will blow your mind. I’m not going to say too much, only that it’s completely in tune with The Law Of Attraction. If you’re not convinced that our thoughts and feelings go further than our own human bodies then this will change your opinion. This shows a woman who has been diagnosed with a cancer in her bladder and has a large tumor. Western doctors are not able to do anything to help. Instead she goes to China to see 3 practitioners who are trained to create the feeling in their hearts as if the woman is already healed. Through an ultrasound, live, we see the cancer disappear – in less than 3 minutes.

Cure all Illnesses in 3 minutes!!! Spread LOVE not HATE!!!

What do you think of that?! If you liked this post on how to focus on healing an illness, then please do share. We really are an amazing Race – only I fear only a tiny percentage of the population understands this. If you’re interested to learn more about The Law Of Attraction, then once again I recommend you read ‘Think And Grow Rich‘ by Napoleon Hill, originally published in 1937. It’s not just about creating wealth but attracting anything you want to attract in your life by reprogramming your mind and focusing only on what you want.


Ways To Focus On Being Positive

Ways To Focus On Being PositiveThis article really grabbed my attention as I’ve witnessed the effect the author speaks about first hand. Eric Barker, a writer for Wired Magazine, examines the Tetris Effect where people in professions such as accounting and law take their work head home with them (unknowingly of course) which can have a negative effect on their personal lives. This is because they’re always looking for mistakes and errors in their line of work. Thankfully, there are ways to focus on being positive, which we’ll look into in just a moment, but here’s Eric Barker’s explanation of the Tetris Effect:

I discovered the tax auditors who are the most successful sometimes are the ones that for eight to 14 hours a day were looking at tax forms, looking for mistakes and errors.

This makes them very good at their job, but when they started leading their teams or they went home to their spouse at night, they would be seeing all the lists of mistakes and errors that were around them. Two of them told me they came home with list of the errors and mistakes that their wife was making. This is what makes me so good at work.

They were stuck in a negative Tetris Effect. We’re finding the same thing with lawyers. Lawyers have three times the level of depression of most of the other occupational groups in America. We discovered that many of the lawyers were coming home and started deposing their children or thinking about their quality time with their loved ones in terms of quantified billable hours.

Why are lawyers 3.6 times more likely to suffer from depression and more likely to end up divorced? They have trained their minds to seek out the bad in life because pessimists excel at law.

And here are ways to focus on being positive if you’re one to fall into this group of people or are close to someone in such a profession:

Is there a way to get your mind out of these negative loops? Yes.

You must train your brain to seek out the good things in life:

  • Retrospective judgment is a technique naturally happy people unknowingly use. It’s putting a positive spin on negative past events so you remember them as good. It’s very effective.

Of these ways to focus on being positive, I am able to relate to the suggestion list three things to be thankful for each day, as only today I read about an incredibly successful person by the name of Jordan Belfort who starts his day with 20 minutes of gratitude for everything he has in his life.  Apparently if you adopt an attitude of gratitude, this leads to much greater happiness and positive thinking.


Meditation Can Improve Your Focus, Productivity and Memory

If you’re a regular on this site, you’ll have seen quite a few posts on how meditation can improve your focus, productivity and memory. Researchers at the University of Washington were able to deduce that those who undertook meditation training were able to concentrate better, remember more of what they had done, were more energized throughout their days and experienced fewer spells of negativity.

Meditation Can Improve Your Focus, Productivity and Memory

Meditation For focus, Productivity And MemoryIn the study, three groups each of 12 to 15 human resource managers were given 8-week training courses in 1) mindfulness meditation, 2) body relaxation, or 3) the mindfulness mediation after being on a wait list for eight weeks (the waitlist control group).

Participants were then tested for their speed, accuracy, and multi-tasking while doing common office tasks like word processing and using email, calendars, and instant messaging. The subjects also recorded their stress levels and memory performance.

The meditation group outperformed the others when it came to reduced stress, greater focus, and improved memory. The waitlist control group didn’t have reduced stress until after they did the meditation training eight weeks later. The relaxation group, oddly enough, wasn’t any less relaxed at work.

Read whole article from Life Hacker

If meditation can improve your focus, productivity and memory, why are more people not doing it? Is it because they feel strange doing it? Is it because they’re afraid of telling people that they meditate? Certainly growing up, if my friends or I ever saw people meditating in public, we’d think they’re a little strange. Nowadays, I’d look at them and think “fair play, good on you” – but that’s because of how much I’ve learned about its benefits since starting this website. If you’d like to give meditation a go, then I’d recommend 10 Minutes To Bliss by Dr Harlan Kilstein.


10 Ways To Focus And Fight Anxiety

Ways To Focus And Reduce AnxietyIf you’re one to suffer from anxiety, these 10 ways to focus and fight anxiety from OpposingViews.com will be of interest to you. Whilst a number of them appear to be more about improving your ability to focus, there are a number of suggestions such as meditation and being present now which may just help with anxiety. I’ve excerpted the first of 10 points.
  1. Meditate – meditation is the best way to clear you mind and get focus or clarity. Doing it daily for an extended period of time (just a few minutes) can lead to a better quality of life and teach you to quickly clear your head almost on command.
  2. Take a break – turn off the TV, shut down the computer, turn off your phone, laptop, tablet.. clear all of the distractions and just relax. De-cluttering your surroundings for a little while each day can help you relax and re-focus. Doing so for an hour or so before bedtime can help you sleep better as well.
  3. Declutter your surroundings – removing visual and auditory clutter from your surroundings in your office, workroom, study, and/or bedroom can help you to keep focus and relax.
  4. Breathe – simple and effective, taking a few deep breaths can act as a sort of on-demand meditation technique to help you relax and clear your mind.
  5. Be present now – by thinking only about what’s happening right now. Forget the past and future and focus on the now. Doing this can remove negative thoughts and change your perspective. Click here to view the whole article
I do think that these 10 ways to focus and fight anxiety are great tips for focusing, as I said in the opening paragraph, but I’m not massively convinced about their ability to fight anxiety. A friend of mine suffered from anxiety for a number of years, and she was put on medication. I’m not sure these 10 tips would have really helped her. She actually cured her anxiety by coming off the medication after conducting her own research to find out how to help her anxiety. She found out that by exercising daily, eating very well (with a full understanding of nutrition) and taking natural supplements she was able to fight it. It goes to prove that medication is not always the best route to solve problems such as this one.

How Not To Focus Like A Monkey

According to a senior lecturer in psychiatry, Ramesh Manocha, at the University of Sydney, background mental chatter that we experience in our human brains is similar to what happens in the monkey mind. This excerpt looks at how not to focus like a monkey, and ultimately how to improve your concentration, by doing your best to remove the monkey mind-like chatter and distractions.

Ways Not To Focus Like A MonkeySo what’s the key to getting the monkey off your back and improving your concentration and focus?

Dr Manocha said it comes down to meditation, with his studies showing those who studied Sahaja Yoga meditation – which focuses on mental silence – had more activity in the parts of the brain associated with sustaining attention.

But if you’re sitting at your desk, struggling to concentrate there are some simpler things you can do to refocus.

“One way is a simple zen exercise which is to ask yourself ‘where is my attention?’ and that quite often helps you bring your attention back’,” Dr Manocha said.

“The second thing is to focus on the absolute present moment and you find two things occur.

“One is when you that when you focus on the present moment there’s no cluttered thinking activity.

“Secondly that enables you to bring your attention onto the present rather than things that are happening in the future or the past.”

Read the full article here

Among this advice as to how not to focus like a monkey, we again see meditation, thinking in the present (a part of meditation), taking breaks from tasks, and eating the correct types of food to help you concentrate, namely those which are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids and Vitamin B12, such as fish, chicken and lean red meat. The more I write on this site, the more I see  meditation appear as one of the most effective ways to focus. Have you tried meditation yet? Are you ready to break through that mental barrier?




Ways To Focus On Spirituality

If you’re a regular on this site, you may have heard me harp on about the Law Of Attraction. I’m a big believer in it, which is why this article, which I’ve renamed Ways To Focus On Spirituality, grabbed my attentionThis is a review of a book called “Realize Your Greatness: A Spectacular Journey to Success, Transformation, and Spiritual Power” written by Marilyn Gordon who is a life transformation teacher, healer, author, speaker, certified hypnotherapist, and hypnotherapy school founder/director – I think she should take on more roles. According to Webwire, you’ll have never seen a book like this before. While the book is a fairy tale, it’s based on the author’s own experiences and countless others who have overcome obstacles and challenges in their lives using the power of their mind in areas of love, relationships, finances, work and spirituality.  This book has received only 5 star reviews and will take you on a journey to learn tools for healing and transformation.

Realize Your Greatness: A Spectacular Journey to Success, Transformation, and Spiritual PowerHere’s a Quote from Alice’s Encounter with The Wise Wealthy Man:

He said, “Remember that your mind is a potent broadcasting system, transmitting and receiving vibrations, or energy, along different kinds of frequencies. Because the frequency you use to transmit is the same one that attracts vibrations back to you, it’s good to learn to transmit powerful, positive messages, increase the power, keep the transmission going constantly, and avoid negativities as much as possible. As you keep the transmissions flowing freely this way, you create great success in anything you do.

“Focus on what you want,” he continued, “and keep that in the forefront of your mind. Imagine your good. Expect great things. Remember that greatness resides in you, dwell on abundance, and know that you are filled with light.”

He was transfixing everyone with his magnetism.
“You are manifesting your aspirations now. Believe this is so, and it is certainly so.”

Read the full review here

I don’t know about you, but having read Ways To Focus On Spirituality, I’m putting this book at the top of my reading list. One of the reviews on Amazon actually says “This book will change your life”. At which point would you not open your mind to the chance that the Law Of Attraction may just be true? Why is it that positive people attract positive things and negative people attract negative things? Why do those in debt attract more debt whereas those who are wealthy attract more wealth? Some people attract love and relationships while others can’t seem to find a partner. The Law Of Attraction is largely about focusing on what you want, rather than on what you don’t have or don’t want. If you focus on what you don’t have, you’ll attract more of that, whereas if you only focus on what you want, then you’ll attract that. A huge part of it is removing all negatives from your life or as much as is humanly possible. If you’d like to learn more about The Law Of Attraction then watch The Secret, and read Think And Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill (first published in 1937 – be careful which version you get, the original is best).


Tai Chi Can Help You Focus?

According to recent research, it has been proven that Tai Chi, practiced three times a week can lead to improved memory and thinking. If this is so, can we deduce that Tai Chi can help you focus? I’d say so. Not only that, but previous research has found that Tai Chi can help reduce stress, improve balance in the elderly and fend off high blood pressure, thus helping those who suffer from heart disease. Scientists have known for some time that aerobic exercise helps with brain development and growth but this is the first time that a non-aerobic exercise has been proven to have similar effects.

Tai Chi Can Help You FocusFindings also revealed the group who did not participate in Tai Chi showed brain shrinkage over the eight months – consistent with what generally has been observed for elderly people in their 60s and 70s.

The research suggests forms of exercise like Tai Chi, that include an important mental health exercise component, are associated with increased production of brain growth factors like aerobic exercise.

Dr James Mortimer, of the University of South Florida, said: “If this is shown, then it would provide strong support to the concept of ‘use it or lose it’ and encourage seniors to stay actively involved both intellectually and physically.

“The ability to reverse this trend with physical exercise and increased mental activity implies that it may be possible to delay the onset of dementia in older persons through interventions that have many physical and mental health benefits.

“Epidemiologic studies have shown repeatedly that individuals who engage in more physical exercise or are more socially active have a lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

“The current findings suggest that this may be a result of growth and preservation of critical regions of the brain affected by this illness.”

Read the full article here

I’d say it’s pretty clear that Tai Chi can help you focus. As Tai Chi is a version of meditation, it could be that it’s the meditative aspect of it which helps with brain development, rather than the slow exercise that it entails. We’ve seen on this site that meditation can help to improve the wiring of your brain, and thus brain development, so it comes as little surprise that Tai Chi can have similar results. Check out previous posts on meditation here.


How Meditation Can Help You Focus

If you ever needed proof about how meditation can help you focus, then this article is just that. Not only does meditation help you focus, but recent research has shown that in just under a month of meditation you can improve the wiring of your brain.  Here, Claire Bates for the Daily Mail has explains the results of Integrative Body-Mind Training (IBMT) on two groups of university students.

How Meditation Can Help You Focus

How Meditation Can Help You FocusStudents undergoing IBMT also reported improvements in mood, experiencing reduced levels of anger, depression, anxiety and fatigue. They also had lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol.

Study leader Professor Michael Posner, from the University of Oregon, who carried out the original US research, said: ‘This study gives us a much more detailed picture of what it is that is actually changing.

‘We did confirm the exact locations of the white-matter changes that we had found previously. And now we show that both myelination and axon density are improving.

‘The order of changes we found may be similar to changes found during brain development in early childhood, allowing a new way to reveal how such changes might influence emotional and cognitive development.’

The findings are reported in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

In their conclusions, the scientists wrote: ‘This dynamic pattern of white matter change involving the anterior cingulate cortex, a part of the brain network related to self-regulation, could provide a means for intervention to improve or prevent mental disorders.’

Neuroscientist Dr Elena Antonova, from the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, said: ‘The findings of this study are potentially good news for all of us. If as little as 11 hours of mindfulness training makes the brain wiring more prolific and better insulated, then simply by being mindful, which is accessible to anyone at any time, we might enjoy a lifetime of mental clarity and emotional stability.’

Read the full article here

If this is how meditation can help you focus, then no wonder more and more people are taking to it.  If at work you are someone who is faced with a never ending flow of emails, phone calls and interruptions, as I was, then it’s easy to lose focus in what you’re actually trying to achieve.  You can spend the whole time staying on top of admin essentially and reach the end of the day wondering what on earth you’ve accomplished. This can lead to all sorts of levels of stress. I used to refer to it as doggy paddling, struggling to keep your head above water. Maybe with some meditation in the daily routine, this would help to get your focus back and reduce stress and anxiety.  If you’ve never tried meditation before, then I recommend 10 Minutes To Bliss by Dr Harlan Kilstein.