• Maria-Katharina Richters

11 Tips on how to refocus once distracted

I am easily distracted and this is something that keeps being something I am working on. My mind jumps from one thing to the next and my concentration levels therefore are disrupted. I know this is my weakness, therefore I have to find ways of working with myself or trick myself, as my conscious awareness of me is observing that I am struggling to focus without being distracted. I became a coach because it aligned with what I love most, learning and growing, finding and sharing wisdom that helps to understand more about the self and the world and how to become more compassionate caring and helpful to people in the world and therefore I am drawn magnetically to anything that will give me more insight and I love reading and listening and seeing inspirational and groundbreaking scientific, psychological, energetic and spiritual stuff and so on. It excites me and this could take up my whole day and it could be neverending if I don’t control myself.

Therefore I need to implement ways that I stick to. Also in our day to day with phones and computers and whatsapps and all of these things that connect all of us, also takes our attention and distraction, we want to know if there has been any action on fb or social media in general, our curiosity is therefore stimulated and our reward system in our brains gets a kick out of us scrolling and scrolling, which is addictive.

If we can become present in everything we do, or at least seek to then we gain quality in life, time doesn't just run by so fast, because when we are in that mode, time can fly by and we will feel drained and not fully present.

The effects it has on our being together with people and friends, partners is influenced majorly by our being distracted.

If we get distracted up to three times a day, we lose an hour because as

According to a University of California Irvine study, “it takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to get back to the task.”

Some of the things I do to help myself with that is following:

- I sometimes put a snooze on all the inspirational posts on fb so I gon’t get sidetracked.

- Listen to music with headphones on, it keeps me focused

- I will take a week or two out without social media

- When I notice my mind jumping too much and I am not in my middle, my ground and I am not able to be, I will go for a walk to clear my head

- I noticed I need to sweat everyday to keep my mind focused, half an hour a day seems perfect for me as it boosts my energy but doesn’t drain me where I then have a whole other problem of procrastinating because I don’t have energy

- With my coach I have allocated times in my diary which are blocked out for rest and play and the goal is to add more free time as time goes by. Its in the stillness that the beauty happens, where things click, where the idea comes.

- I will do art therapy or play music, whatever takes my mind off everything and refocuses me and come back to zero.

- 5 minute trick to get back to the work. Tell yourself only to sit down for 5 minutes and usually this gets you started enough to carry on

- Every 20 minutes just stare at an object far away preferably if its green as a study has shown that the students who stared at something green performed better than the ones staring at concrete

- Meditation is the key here, however the way that my ideal mind sees me doing mediation at the moment is not happening. I am seeking to implement it more into my day to day, as when I did meditate regularly I could see myself be more in tune with myself than ever. Creativity and exercise is another form of meditation.

- Embrace boredom, a great way to train your brain not to have to jump to something to keep it occupied

‘The average person is distracted or interrupted every 40 seconds when working in front of a computer. This is remarkable. While it’s easy to recognize that we live in an age of distraction, to me, this number is astounding. It’s pretty hard to do good, deep work when you can’t even focus for a minute.

In the timeline of our work, our best thinking happens after this 40 second mark.

I’ve started to think a lot more about distractions since stumbling on this statistic. Once you become aware of how rare sustained, focused attention is, it’s impossible to look at your work the same way—it’s like noticing the arrow embedded in the FedEx logo for the first time.

This further supports the fact that we need to eliminate as many distractions and interruptions from our work as possible. The disruptions—including email notifications and alerts—are infinitely easier to deal with before they come up, rather than after. Downloading apps like Freedom or Cold Turkey, or disconnecting from the internet completely while doing your most important work (you spend 47% of your time on the internet procrastinating), can go a long way in helping you charge past this 40 second mark.

Taking just a few minutes to tame distractions ahead of time can save you hours of lost productivity later on.’

Knowing that I have to remind myself to stick with what I am currently doing as multi tasking is not working. It’s a myth that multitasking is good, it definitely might be helpful in situations we need it, but where we can its better not to as it is counterproductive.

Nothing is given its full attention, flow does not happen and everything is done half-heartedly if not finished.

So my invitation today is to join me on slowing down, staying with what you are currently doing or working on and being mindful with deciding when to jump to the next thing.

Perhaps lets try not to jump and to comfortably walk over to the next task once the current one is completed and especially focus on time out, braks and lots of nourishing and playful, me time.



Hamburg, Germany, London, Uk


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