Do you have trouble concentrating or do you feel stressed? Try meditation to solve both problems at the same time! No wonder that we are easily distracted, with so many stimuli constantly trying to draw our attention. Not only does this environment reduce our ability to concentrate, it is also very stressful. You are afraid you'll miss something important when you don't respond to this message right away or don't finish that task right now. By trying to keep up with everything, you can't focus on your work and it seems like nothing ever gets done.
Meditation can help you increase your concentration. Practicing meditation train the brain to more quickly establish and maintain concentration. Meditation also helps your body to deal with stress. Stress hormone levels are lowered in regular meditators. The best thing is: everyone can learn it and it's free!
Learning to meditate
It's fairly simple to learn meditation and there are many types of exercises you can try. You could practice breathing exercises, mindfulness meditation, or other relaxation exercises. The most important thing is to not hold on to thoughts, but pay attention to the current moment and how your body feels.
A simple meditation exercise to get you started:
- Sit comfortably with your back straight.
- Set a timer for 10-20 minutes.
- Close your eyes and mind your breathing. You pay attention to it; you don't have to breathe any differently than you would otherwise.
- Count to 10, one count on each inhalation and exhalation. Reset your count when you reach 10 or when you get distracted.
- Work on this until the timer runs out.
Your thoughts will drift often. That's normal. When you notice that you were distracted, bring your attention back to counting your breaths.
Don't get frustrated when your thoughts drift. This is the entire exercise! To keep bringing your attention back to your breath.
Practice this meditation or another exercise of your choosing daily for the best effect. You can also use an app, like 'Headspace' or 'Calm', which offer free guided meditations like this one. You'll see that after a few weeks of practice, you'll feel a lot calmer, less stressed and will be able to concentrate better!
Do you want to do more to improve your concentration? Take a look at our e-book to get 8 tools to upgrade concentration.