I am struggling with paying attention to almost anything, but do not want to take prescription medication. :/ Anyone else out there going through this. It is effecting my life but I don’t want to alter my brain chemistry. @.@ Also, I am (I think I am) pretty smart. But my attention is stunting how effectively I can communicate even.
@everymorningbornfromtheashes, I have the same problem dude, we’ve discussed it a little. The main thing is identifying the problem and the triggers, after that you just need to be super aware of them and build habits around this awareness.
Shit is not easy, I struggle with it daily and am dealing with getting off of Adderall. I’d welcome any advise on what works well for you.
Good luck my friend, hope everything else is going ok.
Eat healthy, exercise, drink water, and focus on what you want. If you can become absorbed in to what you are doing, which is easy to do when you do things you want to do, it can help carry over to things you have to do. Also, decide what you “have” to do, maybe you can do it a different way or maybe you don’t even really need to do it. But focusing on having a healthy, diverse eating habit and drinking a lot of water and exercising a few times per week will help chemically and physically, and on top of that, the focus will carry over to other tasks as well.
Try meditating or just taking some time out of your day to center yourself; whether it be through sitting there emptying your head, or focusing on an activity you love like playing the guitar or cooking or running or something. Whatever you can get lost in and clear your mind, that’s the key. Meditation, yoga and those other tricks are all trying to exercise the power and control of presence. It helps to get into your zone, then the rest of the day it doesn’t feel like you’re leaping all over, you can take it easy and let things fall naturally into your orbit of influence.
A professor visited my high school and gave a lecture resently. She talked about how computers fuck our hunter/gatherer brains – try reducing the infinite amount of overstimulating devices, such as your computer and tv, phone etc. for a while
Our brains aren’t really able to multitask – we just get accustomed to constant shifting stimuli through the screens of our computers and such, and then when we don’t get that stimuli we can’t relax or concentrate. – also jerkin’ it too much to porn might fuck you up… apparently. I don’t really know to which extent this is true, but maybe it should be taken into considderation. – try practicing on keeping focus on one thing at a time for a while. Being interrupted while doing a task makes you about 40% slower at completing it.
I have a similar struggle right now… I’ve found that taking stronger, deeper breaths help a lot, as well as daily meditation. You said it was interfering with communication.. Does your relationships with others suffer because of this too? I don’t know how many times my fiancé freaked out at me because she thinks I don’t care enough to focus on what she is saying, when in actuallity i try but it’s difficult.
@everymorningbornfromtheashes, I’m going through the same thing. I am a college student and I took classes all through the summer while keeping really busy with work and activism. I have really had no down time to self reflect, and haven’t been making time for myself. It’s all crashing down right now… I quit one of my jobs, am about to fail a class, and haven’t been able to focus on activism and organizing. I am burnt out!!
Over break, I am hiding away at my aunt’s for few days or a week. I am planning on taking a vow of silence for a few days, putting away the phone and computer, and doing a lot of reading, writing, meditating, and self reflecting. I haven’t worked out the details yet, but I will set food restrictions to only eat nourishing foods and I’m thinking of treating myself to 1 hour of music a day (whether it be me playing it or listening to an album). I am hoping that I will be able to determine, or at least start to figure out, how I want to live my precious and wild life.
I definitely agree that computers/phones/TV’s are messing with our attention span. Also, trying to do multiple things at once makes up less efficient and can end up frustrating us and make us feel like we aren’t actually getting anything done.
@everymorningbornfromtheashes, I struggle with the same thing. I have ADD/dyslexia (to put a definition on it) and my family and friends always told me I was scatter brained but I never really realized the extent until coming to university. Many people with learning disabilities are actually extremely smart people (example Albert Einstein, Ron Davis) but they just learn and think in different ways. Check out the Davis Dyslexia Correction program, it’s a program that many people all over the world (my mother included) give to help people with their attention and learning problems. It’s a natural and long lasting solution to things like this. You don’t even need to have dyslexia or ADD to participate in it, you get assessed by a facilitator and they decide whether the program will help you or not. I have found from working with my mom on my problems that I have improved, but I definitely need to put in more work to make more of an impact on the ways that I think. My mother has helped people who struggled with learning and school get through medical school. Anything is possible, the brain is an amazing thing! There are tons solutions out there that don’t involve medication, I hope that this helps you at least a little bit.
Here is the link, good luck to you!
@everymorningbornfromtheashes, I feel the exact same way and let me tell you, it sucks.
Something I’ve started to do when it comes to excruciatingly boring tasks like homework and chores is to break it apart using the Pomodoro Technique.
You essentially set a timer for 25 minutes, called a pomodoro, take a 5 minute break, then work another 25 minutes, etc. The theory behind it is that if you set aside all distractins (phone, facebook, television) that you will be able to work hard for about 25 minutes, at which point your attention will begin to waver, especially if you do not particularly enjoy the task at hand. Your mind will eventually become accustomed to this schedule and will want to keep working after that 25 minute period, but it is important not to, because then you will start to lose interest in a short while after that. The craving to keep working is vital to start working and work continuously for the whole 25 minutes.
It can be a bit tedious to get used to at first, but I’ve been doing it for about a month now and it feel great! I’ve been thinking about increasing the length of the pomodoros to become more efficient in my work, so ill see how that goes!
Here’s a link on how to get started and what it can do to help:
Good luck! Hope this helped!
@everymorningbornfromtheashes, I know this is focused on Lucid dreaming, but it is based around awareness. Awareness is the key to the universe!!! (Or so I’m told)
@daanu, I think that would be a good thing to look into, as I am always thinking and reading in pictures. Which I thought was just how everyone thought. But it hinders the way I communicate to people sometimes. And I get caught up in the emotion of their words rather. Thanks!~
a really beneficial thing to do in this case is to be patient with yourself. make it a practice that every time you find yourself drifting away from the moment, you bring yourself back…and again, and again, and again. over time, you will be able focus for longer and longer periods of time. just be patient! try not to get frustrated with yourself when you find out how often you drift off. bring yourself back as many times as necessary.