Here are a few methods that can be incorporated to test and improve your concentration:
- Take a book and count the total number of words in any one paragraph. Repeat this step one more time before checking to see if both results match. If this challenge starts to become easy, you can opt to increase its difficulty by counting the total number of words in two or three paragraphs, or the total number of words in a whole page.
- Count backwards from 100 to 1 in your head.
- Choose an inspiring word or phrase and repeat it in your head for 5 minutes.
Concentration plays an important role in everyday life. Scientists have discovered that a person's level of focus can be an important indicator of their future success. Many influential and hugely successful people like Steve Jobs or Bill Gates have also stressed on the power of simplicity, and focusing on priorities. As the old Zen proverb says: “When walking, walk. When eating, eat”. No, this quote does not literally refer to the actions of walking or eating, but instead describes a specific approach to life. It simply states that the most important thing is to focus all your attention on the present in order to achieve the best results. Which begs the question - what is the true definition of concentration and why do you sometimes have difficulty concentrating?
The definition of concentration
Concentration is the ability to focus on one thing and one thing only. In other words, being in control of the attention. It is the ability to focus the mind on one subject, object or thought, whilst simultaneously excluding from the mind any other unrelated thoughts, ideas, feelings and sensations.
Unfortunately, distractions have the potential of hampering your concentration more often than you would like it to. At work, the temptation to read an email, answer a phone, respond to a tweet or instant message, or talk to a friend can disrupt your schedule, force you to move meetings and miss project deadlines. As a result, your brain becomes quickly overworked. And instead of focusing on one task like you are supposed to, you end up jumping from one task to another, causing you to lose concentration and become less productive.