The human mind is considered the greatest gift received from nature; this beautiful machinery leaves no stone unturned to surprise and amaze us by discovering new aspects of life. While talking about amazing things a human mind can do, we need to understand various factors that help our brain analyse and develop meaning out of anything. Paying attention to the details is the key here and there are many ways to improve concentration.
While our receptors (eyes, skin, nose, ear and tongue) sense out any unprocessed information, which our brain has quantified through various processes, and one of that traits is being able to concentrate.
The Science Of Concentration
Concentrating on something can be very demanding at times if the thing under observation is not favourable to us, if it is producing so much distraction, or if we may feel prejudiced about it. Being able to concentrate is a natural process; we can train our brain for it but certainly cannot force it. While training the brain, we can do various exercises and take different sets of measures because if we want our mind to process to its maximum levels, we must concentrate.
During our life span, the brain capabilities can differ as we age, we are more agile, sensitive and able to concentrate harder on different aspects of life when we are young, as we age everything tends to go weak including our brain capabilities.
On the contrary, concentration is how we can focus on something without getting disturbed by all the other unrelated things, such as a WhatsApp message, an e-mail or a different idea popping into our head. Daily we deal with such distracting things, in this digital age, we want to multitask because we are always behind on our schedule. Our day generally starts with 5 mins of oversleeping, then we are late for our breakfast, catching up on the bus to work and maybe late for the early morning office meeting. In a way, we are always trying to catch up, so basically, we are fighting against time, and then we say that our concentration is weak. Well! It is bound to be weak because we are not focused on one thing, we are always planning instead of doing it.
5 Major Factors Affecting & Ways To Improve-Concentration
1. Getting distracted from the surrounding
As discussed earlier, we are generation x living on this planet because we can process so much information daily. Whether it is a tweet, a friend request on Facebook, a message on your phone or maybe an email on your desktop, all these activities grab our attention in the middle of the work. This is how our productivity decreases because what we are doing is multitasking, and it is a debatable topic why we should not do it.
While improving your concentration power you should also take care of your mental health. To know more about it please click here.
2. We have a disorganised sleep cycle
The human body, especially the brain, needs to rest and recharge for a while. In today’s world, we are not finding ways to relax. I am not saying sleeping for 7 hours is the only necessity, but being able to calm ourselves and relax is also very important. It may help us to revive and channelise our thoughts.
A study has said due to lack of sleep, one can have low alertness levels and weaker concentration power, and basically, one may be energy deprived throughout the day.
Why anyone is not getting adequate sleep is a different topic to discuss; there can be various biological and social reasons for it; it may be because your overall health is not good, depression, stress, food habits etc. Not getting adequate sleep may also hamper our ability to think, be innovative, and work hard on something; it will impact us overall.
3. Bad eating and drinking habits
In many societies, it is believed that one should not consume cooked food after 1 hour of its final preparation as it may bring a certain level of dullness in us.
What we eat plays a vital role in the functioning of the brain; for example, if we are on a diet to control our body fat and we are not eating essential fats or the nutrients which are required by the brain to work properly, then we just don’t have a weak concentration, but overall body functioning is weak.
Food is considered the fuel for our body; if we are not putting the right fuel in our system, how can we expect it to be brilliant? Similarly, we should keep ourselves hydrated throughout the day and avoid drinking alcohol or caffeine-rich drinks because it will affect our brain’s neurons and reduce efficiency.
4. Less number of physical activities
Nowadays, we are sitting most of the time in our AC office with no chance of doing some physical activities. It is a well-known fact that when we do some physical activities in the morning if we follow a regime of going to the gym or yoga classes, our whole body feels much more relaxed, sharp and concentrated.
To keep our body healthy overall, we must do some physical activities like cycling, swimming, dancing etc. It will help improve the brain’s capabilities and keep you in good shape.
5. The Physical and emotional environment around us
Mind concentration or any functioning of our body can be directly impacted by the physical and emotional environment around us; both need to be healthy as said early that we must exercise to allow our body and brain to work better.
While we are working, some may feel distracted due to various reasons like the weather seems cold, I can’t work today, the light is too dim etc., just before complaining about them, we need to train our brain in such a way that we may be able to concentrate in chaos also. For brain training, we can follow many healthy habits (discussed later on). If one is going through some emotional turmoil in their life, they may not work efficiently in general, and we may have to consult experts also sometimes.
To know further about the topic, please click here.
5 Untold Tips To Improve-Concentration
1. We must not perform multitask
Multitasking seems very productive for individuals, but it reduces our concentration power and ability to focus on something. While multitasking, it is almost impossible to focus on anything many have the habit of writing an office e-mail while listening to music, eating lunch while discussing something very important etc.
In these cases, we may feel we did many tasks at a time, but none of them is done with an undivided focus and improved concentration, and this can result in lower productivity, leading to work burnout.
2. Practise some pranayama and meditation daily
Practising meditation and pranayama in our daily life can increase our mindfulness, concentration and focus on overall life. While doing these things in the early morning, we can increase our consciousness and train our brains to move towards positivity and enlightenment.
If we do not know the exact method to practise meditation, we could sit in silence, keeping our eyes open and focusing on at a point as we practise, we can start closing our eyes.
Similarly, pranayama can be a breathing exercise focusing on it, taking heavy breaths and exhaling for a longer period of inhalation. These activities not only increase our brain functioning but improves our overall health.
3. Take a break, stay close to the nature
Always remember that we came from this nature, and staying close to it may answer many of our day-to-day problems. Whenever we get a chance, we can go out and take a walk in the beautiful nature. It is not necessary to plug in songs every time you step out and enjoy the silence of it. Maybe the chirping of birds makes you feel energetic, focused and can work efficiently. We can also carry some flowerpots or plants and keep them on our office desk.
While working continuously for hours, our mental fatigue can increase; experts have also said to pause and take a break between work. It will improve your efficiency and also will lighten up your mood.
4. Eat well, stay hydrated and keep away from alcohol and caffeine
The mantra is to stay close to nature as much as you can. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables, fruit will provide you with the necessary energies, nutrients and roughage to keep your gut healthy. Always remember if you are feeling good from your gut, your mind will be joyful.
Fruits like blueberries can help increase the concentration level, and green leafy vegetables can help increase the responsiveness and the interconnection between the brain and body. Take dry fruits like walnuts, apricots, figs and dates in your diet. They not only boost brain activities but also improve your immune system.
Stay away from alcohol, caffeine and tobacco. They will cause harm to your body. Alcohol doesn’t easily digest in our body; it flows through veins to different parts of the body and starts hampering its natural cause.
5. Stay focused on the thing you were doing
Many people have said that we should choose to live in the moment by focusing on what we are doing and not getting involved in the outcomes of that work. We generally multi-task at times; we forget to focus and concentrate on anything we are doing.
When our minds keep on dwelling on our past and predicting the future, we set up many hurdles for ourselves, impacting our productivity level. We should not be affected by our brain’s overthinking, it is OK when things are getting out of our hands, let them go, and focus on what you have and what can be done to improve. When we start focusing on everything that we do, these things will ultimately go away.
Other things that can be done to improve concentration
- Fix your biological clock, take rest and sleep adequately.
- Stay hydrated throughout the day.
- Form a hobby and practise it whenever you have time.
- Set priority on everything that you are doing.
The human brain can do wonders; things that are not even imaginable are made possible by our brain, its thinking level and all its powers.
In the race of this fast-moving life, we are losing the beauty of effectively using our bodies, we are fighting our existence with time, and that is how we are multitasking; by doing that, we are challenging our brain to have a divided focus which is not an easy thing to do as discussed in this blog. The tips I have given to improve concentration will help you in the long run.