Life has a way of filling up. Depending on your stage in the journey, you may have kids, a job, a mortgage, a marriage, and a puppy, all needing your attention before you have time to eat breakfast. Like a smart-phone that has jammed, you may discover you’re in need of finding your reset button.
With so many things to accomplish in a day, it can feel daunting to even know where to start. The challenge is compounded by the bells that ring, the chimes that ding, and the overall false urgency of having to be available to everyone at all times. Learning how to reset your attention and focus after feeling like you are going to short-circuit is crucial. Finding that reset button, however, can be tricky. Mix and match these proven ways to reboot.
Meditation. The effects of meditation on our wandering minds has been explored, and continues to be an excellent way to reset. Cultivating a meditation practice of any kind develops the capacity to tune out any number of distractions, which soothes us, allowing us to feel refreshed. While a single session can help immediately, having a consistent practice shows the best results.
Aerobic Exercise. Recent research from the University of Kansas Medical Center looked at how exercise affects the ability of older adults to focus. This builds on years of studies that have touted the benefits of heart-pumping aerobic exercise on children with ADHD. Past studies have shown that even moderate amounts of exercise releases enough chemicals into the brain to support the ability to concentrate, avoid distraction, balance mood, and remain alert. The results of this recent study on adults 65 years and older showed that those who exercised the most had the most increase in their ability to focus and hold attention. Increasing our fitness level, it seems, increases our ability to have a clear and attentive mind.
Be One with Nature. The simple act of looking out of your window at nature can have a calming effect. Immersing yourself in nature amplifies the restorative power of the great outdoors. Not only can being in nature help you reset your focus, but, like exercise, it can improve your mood. Look for every opportunity to spend bits of your day in nature.
When you find yourself spinning, unable to harness the wild stallions of your mind, take a few moments to step away from the task at hand, sit mindfully, skip joyfully, or bask in the beauty of nature. Your soul will be soothed, your heart will be filled, and your attention, bless it’s overworked soul, will be ready to re-engage.