This week, I want to delve into the topic of focus and concentration, and how they’re often elusive in today’s fast-paced world. What if I told you that there’s a way to unlock these abilities and transform the energy of stress into improved focus and concentration? In this post we are going to explore how to improve your focus and concentration using just 2 minutes of your time very day and what are the Techniques that the DeRose Method teaches to achieve these results.
But first, for those who do not know already, the DeRose Method is a unique approach to mindfulness, well-being, meditation and performance. It offers practical exercises to help you better manage your emotions, increase your focus and reduce stress. It is composed of Techniques and Concepts that together teach you to get the most out of your life.
Unlock Your Mind
In order to unlock the ability to stay focused and to concentrate we need to really understand what being focused and concentrated means…. We often see portrait in movies and TV that people concentrating are making an “intense effort”. But this is just what entertainment uses as a shorthand to try to demonstrate this state of mind. In truth, a person who is concentrated and focused often has a gentle smile on their face and they are able to filter out other sensorial inputs and chose on the inputs they want to accept.
For example, when I am writing this post, my attention is on the keyboard, on the words I am stringing together, on the logic of my argument. If my attention remains on this task I will be able to completed it in a relatively short time. However, if i get distracted by something, anything, this will draw my attention away, I will become less efficient, it will take me longer complete this task.
Therefore, in order to unlock your ability to focus and your productivity you need to be present here, I aware of the task you are doing. I’ve read similar phrases in a lot of places and I often find that just saying this means nothing. So let me try to help you understand the difference. Do you remember the last time you brushed your teeth? Or the last time you made a cup of tea or coffee? When you were brushing your teeth did you notice the feel of the toothbrush, the taste of the toothpaste, the feeling of the bristles against your teeth compared to the feeling against your gum? Were you aware of each tooth you brushed? Or was it an automatic process that began and ended almost without note?
If you are fully aware and present you should be able to describe in some detail what happened…. if you were not so present, the task itself probably feels like a blur and you barely noticed it. This latter feeling is very common, it is part of the autonomous nervous system, of your biology, to automate and be less aware of what you are doing. This is how you drive your car or ride a bike, how you walk, how most people live their lives. It is a state of low energy consumption and automation that has its value.
Why Is It Important?
Why is it desirable to break out of this process? Well, when you want to be creative, when you need be at your best, when you want to achieve more, this automatic process is not enough, it is just the basic level. Therefore, you need to break out of this automation to be able to reach your full potential.
In the DeRose Method we train your mind at every opportunity so that it can respond to your needs. Engage the automatic mode or being focused stop being a random occurrence and being to respond to your desire to be focused or not.
So here is a short training that you can do for yourself. It will be very quick. All you need is to dedicate 2 minutes of your day to this exercise to start to feel its effects. This is clearly not a silver bullet that will suddenly completely chance your brain’s physiology, but it is an effective step to breaking out of the automation and owning this processes. I recommend that you do this exercise for 1 minute when you wake up and for 1 minute before you go to sleep. You can do it while still in bed.
All you need is to picture an image. It can be any image you wish. But I would suggest that you imagine the image pictured below:
The less you think ABOUT the image the better, you should just imagine this image and contemplate it. As such, knowing about the name or history of this image is not necessary. If you want to do the exercise in this more pure form, skip the next paragraph.
This image is called Ashtánga Yantra. Its origins trace back to the most ancient cultures of India and the planet.
Alright, the exercise is simple, imagine the image. Hold this image in your mind for one minute. When the time is over. conclude the technique. The key to this technique is to notice if you got distracted. Whenever you get distracted, don’t worry, it is extremely common, all you need to do is return your mind to the image. As you do this technique you are training your mind to focus on what you want, creating the necessary training for your mind to follow your instructions. Remember, if you get distracted, don’t worry, it is extremely common, all you need to do is return your mind to the image. That is it… one minute as you wake up, one minute before you go to sleep… every day.