We have all had trouble staying focused at one time or another. For some of us, it is a regular occurrence! At BrainSpeak, we tend to use one of our programs to help us to stay focused.
Everyone has their own way of gaining more concentration, so we thought we would ask a few noted experts about the strategies they used to get or stay focused. Here are five of the answers that we got back!
Dr. Tammi Baliszewski
Dr. Tammi Baliszewski is a Holistic Life Counselor, Hypnotherapist, and a graduate of The esteemed University of Santa Monica.
She is also the host of "Journey to Center" on Empower Radio, the author of Manifesting Love from the Inside Out and Manifesting Prosperity from the Inside Out. For more about Tammi, visit her website at www.tammibphd.com
Life can be crazy and chaotic. Six years ago, when I was in a car accident and it was my fault, I realized I was spread too thin, and really need to stay grounded and focused. That is when I decided to create a morning practice to start my day in an empowered, conscious and intentional way. I attribute this simple practice for my focused way of being, safety, peace, as well as my current success, happiness and prosperity. This includes:
- Beginning my day with gratitude. As soon as I become conscious of being conscious, I count my blessings.
- Then I consider my day and set my intentions for what I want to accomplish and how I want to move though my day (I always like to add “with grace and ease”).
- I then imagine receiving love and rippling out love.
- Next I ground myself, put a circle of light around me, which represents my strong, flexible boundaries.
- The next step is simply focusing on my breath for about 5 minutes.
- Finally I ask the Universe if there is anything else I need to know before I go, and listen for the wisdom within.
To stay focused, I embrace and practice a wide spectrum of grounding activities that run from very short to very long time periods, and I try to do them regularly. For me, work is the stuff I do in between play and travel.
- I meditate and try to do at least a little yoga every day.
- I spend time in nature walking, collecting natural found objects and gardening.
- I break up my day by alternating between simple and complex activities.
- I always take Saturdays off no matter what.
- I make art as a spiritual practice, as gifts and as a way of journaling.
- I buy food from farmer’s markets and cook from scratch.
- I travel often and take at least two vacations a year, as well as long weekends away.
- I alternate between the city and the country as much as I can.
- Once in a while, I undertake some type of walking pilgrimage or silent retreat to get away from it all.
- I keep multiple to-do lists, which help me stay focused but I don’t stare at them all day.
- I keep a list of major achievements as time passes and one of accomplishments I would like to achieve.
Whitney Vosburgh is co-author of two books: WORK THE FUTURE! TODAY and the WTF! 2019 POCKET PAL.
He is co-founder of Work The Future! Today, a social venture that offers vision, leadership and solutions for maximizing personal, organizational and societal potential.
He is also a consulting Chief Marketing Officer and change agent for Fortune 20 companies and Silicon Valley startups, guiding over $20+ billion worth of value creation.
Stefania Magidson was born in Romania and in 1983 immigrated with her family to the United States. She received a BS in Health Education and a Master’s in Applied Spiritual Psychology.
In 2002 she founded Blue Heron Foundation, one of the largest non-profit organizations in the Romanian diaspora, focusing on improving the quality of life of Romanian and Moldovan orphaned youth by providing them greater access to life’s opportunities through merit based college scholarships in Romania. The organization has raised over $2,000,000, has awarded over 300 college scholarships and has touched the lives of over 2,900 kids. She is the author of the book "Searching for the White Magician," a series of dialogues where she explores themes ranging from immigration and philanthropy to spiritual psychology and self-realization.
In order to maximize my ability to stay focused throughout the day, I pay attention to a number of factors:
- Sleep: I try to sleep 7-8 hours every night.
- Macchiato and Meditation: I start my day between 6 and 7 am with a small macchiato after which I meditate for 20 minutes. This Sacred Sanctuary I cultivate inside is a place I can return to at any time, can easily access throughout the day and within just a few seconds.
- Early morning person; I tend to schedule most of the work that takes a great deal of concentration and focus during the early and first part of the day, this is when I work best.
- One thing at the time; over-scheduling and too much multitasking make me go into frantic mode.
- Organization: Prioritizing, planning ahead of time, delegating and being realistic about how much time each activity takes help me greatly.
- No caffeine after 12 PM, makes me fidgety, affects my focus and night sleep.
- Small breaks every couple of hours (i.e. walking barefoot in the garden)
- Quality food: I try not to let my blood sugar get too low and make healthy choices; sugar, big meals and alcohol make me sleepy.
- Listen to concentration music (great options on Youtube, really works)
In order to stay focused when completing a task, I start by keeping a clear picture of the end goal in my mind at all times.
- I then work backwards logically, breaking things down into bite-sized pieces.
- I focus on how exciting and fulfilled I will feel once I have completed whatever task needs to be accomplished.
- Sometimes I remind myself that it’s easier to get the difficult or particularly mundane tasks done first, making it easier to complete whatever needs to be finished next…. similar to how it feels good to eat your vegetables before eating dessert.
- I also turn off the telephones and decide to deliberately not look at my emails until I’m done with the task.
- Removing any potential distractions is very helpful to maintaining my focus.
Brent Hunter is a Program Management executive consultant. With multiple advanced degrees, he is a graduate of General Electric’s fast-track Information Systems Management Program and holds twelve active professional certifications. Brent is also a former psychotherapist, National Certified Counselor and is the award-winning author of five books regarding the subjects of Knowledge Management, psychology and universal wisdom. One of Hunter’s books, The Rainbow Bridge: Bridge to Inner Peace and to World Peace, is about universal wisdom and has received 22 literary awards.
Hunter’s website is http://www.BrentHunter.TV
Denise McDermott M.D.
Denise McDermott M.D. is a proud mother, an integrative adult and child psychiatrist, a healer, a podcast host, author, and is a social media influencer, passionate about bridging science, spirituality and psychology to change the way we think, talk and act about mental health.
In the fall of 2018 she had the honor of speaking in Dharmsala India at the Dalai Lama’s Tibetan Medical Society’s Body Mind Life conference on “Nurturing Children’s Mental Health.” For the latest shows and articles visit DrDeniseMD.com
What I do is start my day with gratitude and clear goals of what I want to accomplish. Being in a space of grace gives one mental clarity.
- I meditate upon awakening and throughout the day. I assign deep meaning to powerful words and this serves as a reset.
- I have a mantra, “Be loving. Be kind.” This helps me tune into the moment and to accomplish my physical and spiritual goals.
- I also use a multisensory “RE-Focus” trick. It includes a “checking in” with my own personal “GPS system:”A deep breath. A mental pause. A written intention. This creates a vehicle of staying focused in the moment.
- My wellness routine that allows this level of awareness includes a moving meditation of swimming (5x per week), pilates (2x per week), mindful nutrition, adequate sleep and quality time with kindred spirits!
- Living with intention and remembering that this is the only moment we have is what inspires me to stay focused.
I tell my clients that we are our own best friends and personal healers. I tune in with them and adapt a system that works for them to stay motivated!
We hope that reading about the strategies that these successful people use to stay focused helped inspire you with new ideas to try. Some people approach it more generally as maintaining a healthy lifestyle while others have specific rituals that they perform to get the results they want.
In our next article, we follow up with these same experts to find out if they use different strategies when feeling particularly stressed out!