Why Can’t We Focus?

Do you pull out your smartphone too often and don’t even realize it? Say, while watching a movie that you are actually enjoying?

For me, the big moment of realization was a hard punch in the gut. I was thoroughly enjoying a book and yet, I pulled out my phone to check social media. I was horrified. This never happened before; nothing could pull me away while reading. How did it get so bad? I was utterly disgusted at how far these apps have invaded my brain- I can’t even focus on the activity I most enjoy!

Imagine how hard these companies have worked to make their apps addictive. They are able to pull us out from completely fulfilling tasks, just to look at a few notifications (and then get lost scrolling endlessly)

It does seem that we blame our phones for everything that goes wrong in our lives. That is because it is actually true. Since they are working harder to get us hooked, we have to work harder to resist them. Smartphones can be excellent tools to make our lives better. You just need to exercise much more self-discipline to stay away from the addictive stuff.

Here are some exercises for you to reclaim that focus:

  • Read a full chapter of a book without getting distracted by anything.
  • Go for a walk/run/gym without earphones.
  • Listen to a full album without switching to any other apps.
  • Watch a movie without checking your phone. Not even in the interval.

The most important skill you need to develop in this aspect is ‘mindfulness’. This is a state of mind when you are fully present in the moment and not thinking of anything else. You need to be comfortable with being bored. Work on letting go of distractions, build mental discipline and you’ll regain that laser-sharp focus very soon. Check out these articles for help in those aspects:

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