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Fundamental Focus: Mastery Strategies to Reclaim Your Attention

The ability to focus deeply in today's distraction-riddled world, has never been more challenging. Which means it’s also becoming a rare & valuable skill to develop.

With the rise of addictive technologies and the growing, constant demands on our attention, from smartphones to social media, staying focused on what truly matters has become more & more difficult for many. Hence, why it’s important to understand our kryptonites, and learn the necessary tools, so we can support ourselves & our little ones, to build up our attention armour.

Seeing both sides of the story is key. If knowing is half the battle, then masterful action is the other. Awareness + Solution = Mastery.

Understand that there is a war being waged on mastery, that’s being fought with distraction. We are that far. Technology companies have thousands of dedicated engineers behind those world-famous apps, that makes them so hard to put down. Hence the need to develop the skills to counteract the harmful effects on our lives.

Adam Alter presents some amazing insights in ‘Irresistible’, explaining the ‘big tech’ distraction agenda, so we can then learn the tools from Nir Eyal’s ‘Indistractable’ to better our lives. He shows us a few key strategies to reclaim our attention and become more fundamentally focused in our daily lives. So let’s dive in…

Understanding fundamental focus

Fundamental focus goes beyond simply avoiding distractions; it involves deliberately directing our attention towards tasks and activities that align with our goals and values. Being able to focus on what we want, when we want, for as long as want, at will is the game here in question. Have you mastered it?

Alter explains how addictive technologies do their best to hijack our attention, leading to a constant state of distraction and fragmented focus. The more were connected to apps & online games with ads and pop-ups, etc… the more susceptible we are to many mental disorders. Hence, why it’s a great idea to learn the practical techniques for regaining control of our attention and living more intentionally, where Eyal masterfully provides a framework.

How to reclaim your attention

Recognise your kryptonite : Understanding the triggers, or kryptonite, that lead to distraction is the first step towards regaining control. These can range from smartphones notifications to visual cues in our environments (cars, offices, etc…) that prompt us to engage in unproductive, attention-grabbing behaviours. By identifying our kryptonite, we can proactively manage them and minimise their impact on our focus by making them invisible. Hard to do or connect to, by placing them out of our visual zone and far away, so you have to make a real effort to go after them. All the while, knowing that you’ve decided not to to engage with it and you’re going to do it anyway. oof. Acting against your values will bring nothing but heartache overtime, I do not recommend it. You got this. Now lock that thing done.

Set clear intentions : Attention is currency we spend every day. Some say it’s the most expensive one ot spend because you can never get it back. Unlike money which is in abundance everywhere. So deciding on how do you want to spend your time and attention is crucial to create a habit around. This can turn into a family discussion as well. By consciously choosing where to direct our focus, and creating agreements with everyone involved, we can ensure that we’re investing our energy in activities that matter most to us, day in & day out.

Creating distraction-free areas: Supporting fundamental focus by minimising distractions can optimise our work areas and increase productivity. Every small incremental gain is exactly that, a gain. Over time they can become major when you stack them, so let’s clear out the distractions and work even better. This may involve putting your phone on airplane mode and putting it in a drawer while your focus on one task. You can declutter both your physical & digital work spaces, by removing anything that will pull you away from your mission at hand. This can also mean hiding those gaming icons on the phones, computers, etc… Establishing designated work areas where distractions are kept to a minimum is key.

Practicing mindfulness: Once you’ve got a clean and simple digital & physical area, now its time to clean up inside ourselves. We’re not done yet! By incorporating mindfulness practices into our daily routines, we can create more present-moment awareness and reduce time spent with a wandering mind. We focus our mind by training it like any other muscle. Daily. Consistently. And slow but surely, we can become strong. Utilising scientifically-proven techniques such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, and mindful eatingmindful walking or even active listening, can support our minds to stay focused on the task at hand so youre too busy being focused to be tempted by distractions. Then theres also no need to resist them. Root cause solutions here. Build up your strength to get away from temptations of a weak mind.

Energy management: Both Alter & Eyal stress the importance of effective time management in maintaining fundamental focus. I like to think about it in terms of energy management. My attention costs energy. I spend it with every activity. Theres only so much time in which to spend it so it’s important Im managing my wealth of energy very closely. Otherwise, oops, theres went 30 minutes or the afternoon, and what do I have to show for it? A few great techniques are: deep work blocks, prioritising tasks, and setting boundaries with technology. You can gamify it and give yourself rewards AFTER you’ve completed important tasks of course. Then celebrate a job well done! You stuck to it, worked really well and are rewardsed for the great effort. Give them a cookie! Seriously, I love cookies. Oops theres my kryptonite… delete… By structuring our energy purposefully, we can maximise our productivity and minimise distractions.

Single-Tasking: Deleting multi-tasking from your life can have so many benefits. Our brains simply aren’t built for it. That myth has been busted (DYOR). Simply commit to completing one task at a time and it’s as simple as that. Focus your attention fully on the task at hand, immersing yourself in the present moment and giving it your undivided attention. Sounds simple yet can be incredibly difficult for some. By prioritising depth over breadth, you achieve greater efficiency and quality in your work. Which is more valuable in the long run to both you, your team and your clients. So I recommend this as a daily routine.

In-closing

In a world filled with ever-growing distractions, mastering fundamental focus is a life-long skill that can significantly boost our productivity, well-being, and overall success in our work, life & beyond. We have the power to regain control of our attention, to direct it at will and live more intentionally when we commit to it. By prioritising focus and minimising distractions, we can ignite our infinite potential, to achieve our goals with greater clarity and purpose.

Where attention goes, energy flows. So what are you giving your energy to? Where are you neglecting to give your energy & attention? What’s important now and how are you being consistent in showing up to it every day?

It’s time to shine, for the betterment of ourselves & everyone around us. Let’s spread this masterful energy like wildfire. By simply dedicating ourselves, consistently, to our purpose, we can create quality in abundance. Fundamental focus is key. Let’s get on it.

#focus #deepwork #singletasking #distractionfree #masterymindstate

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