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Focus

I started writing this over a week ago after listening to a podcast by Steven Bartlett. This one was with Johann Hari, they discussed focus, and how we are all losing it. If you’re interested the podcast is titled Diary of a CEO. They talked about the constant bombardment of notifications, emails, messages, social media, etc and the distractions they cause, which in turn leads to us being less able to focus. It has taken me over a week to write this because I, like most, am finding the terrible events taking place in Ukraine incredibly upsetting. It is hard to focus when something as awful as war is at the forefront of your mind.


The podcast got me thinking. We receive some lovely feedback from people we work with about the sense of achievement they feel from completing a painting. Teams and individuals say how they enjoyed having the time to do something for themselves, to take on a new creative challenge and to relax. Creating is good for you, it relaxes the mind and body, we already knew that. What I hadn’t thought about was that people get so engrossed in our sessions that they don’t check their phones. At the end of the event they feel refreshed, relaxed, proud of themselves. Perhaps part of that is due to the fact that they have allowed themselves to get into the zone, or as Johann Hari suggested, a state of flow. Without the pressure to check emails and answer messages, they allowed their minds to wander and to create freely.


How often do we allow ourselves time to completely switch off and focus on something fully? When was the last time you were in a flow state? The Headspace website describes a flow state or being in ‘the zone’, “as a “sense of fluidity between your body and mind, where you are totally absorbed by and deeply focused on something, beyond the point of distraction.”


Can you remember the last time you allowed yourself to avoid any distraction and to be utterly absorbed by something?


I try to have time away from my phone, to remind myself that I don’t always have to be doing something. The emails and messages can wait. I walk most days to give my mind a chance to escape, to slow down. The news, the weather and a general feeling of ‘meh’ has left me feeling less inspired than usual and my walks haven’t quite hit the spot. However, after a challenging boxing session yesterday I felt much clearer, less groggy. Turns out that punching a bag in a controlled way feels great. I definitely felt myself get into the zone. No phone, just me, my trainer and some gloves. At the end of the session I was reluctant to pick up my phone and re-engage with the world. In the same way that some turn to art, or painting, writing or running, the gym is my escape, my hour to myself.


What can you do for yourself this week to unwind?


I have recently started following Lessa Renee on instagram. Leesa’s most recent post is about how the information we are reading and watching at the moment might feel ‘too much’. How those who are highly sensitive and deep feeling may be feeling overwhelmed and overstimulated. Leesa’s suggestions were to journal, to create, to amplify and to play. (Here is the post.)


If you are feeling overwhelmed, give yourself permission to switch off, to disengage and to do something for you. Meditation, a walk, creating, writing, watching a film (without your phone next to you!), exercise, baking, something that fills you with a sense of calm, something that will help to calm your nervous system. Take some time for yourself, and perhaps it will bring back your focus.



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Pasha Salnikov
Pasha Salnikov
Dec 08, 2023

That's great to hear about your podcast inspiration! Starting something based on that spark shows real initiative. If you're seeking help with your nursing essays, considering a professional nursing essay writer might be a good move. Just as podcasts can inspire thoughts and ideas, a skilled writer could help bring your nursing essays to life, adding depth and clarity to your work.

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Wow, very cool article, and the podcast is also incredible, I like the direction your thoughts and Steven Bartlett's thoughts are going in - it's very cool. In general, the fact that we lose focus on some things doesn't surprise me, but what does surprise me is that we can't adjust this focus afterwards. As a student, I'm very lucky to have this fantastic service phdresearchproposal.org that helps me and I don't have to worry so much about my focus in my studies, so I can switch it to new topics and things. But still, there is a problem and it needs to be talked about, because if people don't pay attention to it, it may be too late to…

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Unknown member
Aug 21, 2023

Cool article, quite cool and energetically written, I managed to feel everything the author wanted to convey with his words and this article in general. I always like it when the author points out the reliability of his data and adds check here, it emphasises his attitude to the reader and to his own material, I always note this for myself, because it is worth a lot. Today, about 20 per cent of all authors include the original information source in their chat room.

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