Learning How to Focus Your Mind is the Only Way to Self Improvement
Posted on February 28th, 2011 by Douglas Ellsworth
Do you understand the importance of knowing how to focus your mind and concentration in order to succeed with self improvement?
If you don’t understand how to focus your mind, you will never live your dream. You’re never going to achieve anything great and you will be permanently followed by the self sabotaging thoughts and inner voices that are part and parcel of normal everyday life. The way you focus your mind, the way you control your mind is the key that unlocks all the wonderful things that can flow freely in your life. It’s up to you to let them flow. In other words, you’ve got to develop your ability and learn how to focus your mind, for it is the ultimate self improvement.
To learn how to focus your mind simply means that you must learn how to pay attention. There are ‘gurus’ who will tell you that you have to focus on your goals – but those goals of yours, whatever they might be, will only be achieved in the future if you discover how best to focus your energy in the present. Focus is a now thing. What you do just now doesn’t only influence your ability to achieve your goals, it determines the very course of your life. And that’s no over-statement – because if you don’t focus your mind on what you’re actually supposed to be doing right now, not only can you not do it as best you can, more importantly, your mind, by default, will focus on your inner voices – the nonsense that not only is completely irrelevant to the here and now but stuff that is holding you back from doing your very best and understanding how to focus your mind.
What you must realize is that our default state of mind focuses on what psychology calls our ‘stored knowledge’. This so-called knowledge tells us what’s happening in the world and then determines how we react. The only problem is that all of our most important stored knowledge was learned when we were young and impressionable – some of the really important stuff being learned before we were three years old! So, if my objective is to become the CEO of some big company, or bring my breath-taking new software to an eagerly waiting world, or buy my villa on some exotic island, has what I learned as a toddler got anything to do with me and my current goals?
The short answer is ‘no’ – the long answer is worse! After all, all our feelings of inadequacy bubble up from our stored knowledge. So, you must deliberately stop your mind focusing on your stored knowledge – and the only real alternative is to master how to focus your mind on the real world – the present moment. Not only is it the only reality in which we all actually live, paying attention to now makes everything easier and makes you better at whatever it is your currently supposed to be doing. But knowing how to focus your mind and attention does not come naturally – so you have to cultivate it. And as the word “cultivate” suggests, practicing how to focus your mind is something that you must do both regularly and continuously.
And your best starting point is right at the start of every day – the old Irish proverb that a good start is half the job is oh so close to the truth. If you don’t set your mind from the get go each morning, you’ll be on that slippery slope that’s just too easy to slide down. Why? Because you’ve become accustomed to it, that’s the way you’ve always been existing.
So, starting right now, take five or ten minutes to turn off the constant noise that’s addling your mind. Sit down, somewhere quiet, shut your eyes and feel your own breath. Feel how it is to sit on the chair. Hear what it’s like to actually hear all the sounds that your normal mind ignores. Take a few minutes out a couple of times during the day too to repeat this exercise on how to focus your mind. You could sit on a park bench to see what it’s like to actually simply observe what’s actually happening; you could listen to the birds and smell the roses.
The secret to your success lies in your ability to concentrate and learn how to focus your mind – not on the future, not on your plans and wishes, but on only what’s real, right here, right now.
Learn how to focus your mind if you plan on achieving success by means of meditation, visualization, manifestation and other methods of self improvement.