flower geranium

In concentration we marshal all our dispersed energies into focusing on just one thing. When mastered, concentration can be of unimaginable benefit in our life; through concentration we can increase our productivity and give ourselves greater peace of mind. These are some suggestions for improving your concentration.

One-Pointedness

Concentration means that we can focus on one thing, to the exclusion of all else. Our concentration may involve writing or working on a particular problem. Whatever our activity the most important criteria is to give all our focus, concentration and attention solely to the activity at hand. Concentration becomes hopeless when we get distracted by several different things at the same time; to improve our concentration we must stop trying to do several things at once. If you are writing an article, don’t be thinking about what to say to your boss later in the day. If we can develop one-pointedness we will develop a tremendous intensity that enables us to achieve our tasks much quicker.

Learn to Control Your Thoughts

The main stumbling block to concentration is the inevitable distraction we get from our own thoughts. It is random, uninvited thoughts that distract us from achieving pure concentration. The only solution is learning to control and quieten our thoughts. The first thing to be aware of is that we do have the choice to welcome or reject thoughts; we should not feel a helpless victim of our own mind. The second thing is we need to consciously watch our thoughts and prevent ourselves following any train of thought that detracts from our concentration. If we casually begin a project, it is easy to begin daydreaming and lose focus; what we need to do is be very determined to concentrate without distracting thoughts. When we have this intention and determination it becomes much easier to concentrate.

Practice

Concentration is an activity like any other. Clearly the more we practice, the better our concentration will become. We wouldn’t expect to be a strong runner without doing some training. Similarly, concentration is like a muscle, the more we exercise the stronger it becomes. There are specific concentration exercises we can do, such as focusing on a small point of an object; but life itself presents innumerable opportunities to sharpen your concentration. The key is to always take opportunities to heighten our powers of concentration.

Meditation

The practice of meditation will definitely improve our powers of concentration. Actually, when we try to meditate, it is concentration that is the first thing we need to master. A daily period of meditation gives us the chance to specifically work on concentration techniques. This can involve concentrating on a candle or just concentrating on our breathing. These exercises are simple but effective.

Change is as Good as a Rest

It is difficult to concentrate on one thing for an extended time period. Sometimes, the best solution is to give ourselves frequent change. If we concentrate on one task for an hour, we can then move onto something different. This change in activity enables us to use different qualities, therefore, we can maintain our powers of concentration without becoming tired of one activity.

Physical Alertness

The powers of our concentration depends a lot upon our physical well-being. If we are tired, unhealthy and afflicted by numerous minor ailments, concentration will be more difficult. Of course, concentration is still possible; it is just more difficult. However, we have to try to make life easy for ourselves; we need to give a high priority to our physical health – getting sufficient sleep, staying physically fit. Undertaking exercise will help develop our concentration. It will help if we lose weight, clear the mind and create a sense of dynamism. If you struggle to concentrate, we need to think of a holistic solution; good physical health and fitness will definitely help develop our powers of concentration.

Photo by: Tejvan

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