What is The Secret of Concentration?
Have you ever caught yourself concentrating deeply on learning the three key points in a Scientific American article and suddenly found your mind daydreaming about whether you locked the front door and then visualizing yourself at Bloomingdales buying a birthday gift for your significant other?
Concentration is being centered, focusing your attention on one goal, from Latin,
with a center. You do it all the time, right? What is the opposite of concentration?
It is distraction, wandering, spread out and scattering.
When we are concentrating on reading or listening, the slightest distraction will trigger a change of focus and loss of concentration. Many students swear they cannot study without Heavy Metal music in the background, or is it Bach? Both cause distractions and destroy learning and memory.
Distraction is the sound of a conversation twenty-five feet away, the audible hum of
an air conditioner, heater or recycling electrical appliance. What to do?
Wear a set of twenty-five cent earplugs while reading; it settles the issue.
Profound statement: Any music playing loud enough for you to hear will cause your
focus to be inhibited and concentration to wander.
Concentration is Really Brain Dominance
Homo sapiens spend their sixteen waking hours either focused on specific goals or unfocused and mentally wandering in random subjective thinking.
a) concentrating or
Daydreaming is watching five hours of TV daily including YouTube at the office,
verbal chatter with family and associates, and self-talk, also known as stream of consciousness.
When you are concentrating on your goals your left brain is dominant. When you
are daydreaming your focus is mentally hearing, seeing and feeling random
stimuli. Daydreaming includes worry, fear, anxiety and chronic stress.
It is produced and directed by your right brain exclusively.
If you are reading and want to concentrate and avoid daydreaming you must
evict your right brain from mental dominance.
It is easy and required a two-minute eye movement exercise that maintains
concentration for 90 minutes.
Eye Movement Restructuring is exercising the six extraocular muscles of each
eye for concentration. After the first thirty seconds of eye movements your left brain is dominant and both hemispheres are in sync for learning, memory and concentration.
Here is the gist of it - move your eyes as far left (without moving your head) as
possible. Now stay peripheral left for a count of one, one thousand, two, one thousand, and three, one thousand. Return your eyes to center (focus forward).
If you can complete a lateral left eye movement, you can execute a lateral right
repositioning. Same as before: move your eyes to your extreme right; hold it for a
three count, and return to center.
Move your eyes toward the Northwest (your upper left) and remain there for
a three count and return to center. Do the same toward Northeast (your upper
right) for a three count and return to center. Remember; do not move your head.
Finally, move your eyes downward to the Southwest (lower left) for a three count
and return to center. Now move your eyes downward to the Southeast (lower right)
for a three count and return to center. Remember; do not move your head.
Mental movies, stream of consciousness and self-talk are right brain effects.
Depression, test anxiety and panic attacks are exclusively right brain programs.
When you consciously make your left brain dominant by Going Lizard eye movements, you are using your left brain to dominant your right brain.
Only one hemisphere (brain) can be dominant at any given moment. When you do
the six eye movement exercises your left brain consciousness is triggered. Doing it KOs (cancels) whatever programming your right hemisphere is producing.
This may be the most important personal strategy you learn in this life for survival
and self preservation. It offers you mastery over your state of mind and concentration. You own the strategy to cancel chronic stress in its tracks.
If you are experiencing daymares (mental movies causing fear and anxiety), Go
Lizard and after two minutes you brain shifts dominance to your left brain for reason, logic and order, and away from depression.
As soon as you begin the first extraocular eye movement you inhibit fear, anger and angst, and trigger relaxation and problem solving. You go Parasympathetic Nervous
system and a release of acetylcholine for deep relaxation and inhibition of adrenaline and cortisol, the stress hormone.
It is because each cerebral hemisphere has its own specialization, and your brain cannot have more than one program operating at a time. Cognitive dissonance (mental conflict) grinds to a halt when one hemisphere becomes dominant.
Imagine this as a computer operation: it is serial processing. One program must complete its operation before another program can institute its code. When you
cancel a program in midstream (switch from right to left brain programming),
it is an almost instantaneous execution.
When you exercise your left brain programming by eye movement restructuring,
you cancel the right brain programming of stream of consciousness (self talk).
Your left brain cannot create depression, only your right brain. Switcheroo is choosing a new pleasurable mental program to run.
Please focus on this: Feelings follow imagery. Your mental movies create your
emotions. Change your negative, death and destruction mental visualization and
your instantly change your feelings.
Work on this one - energy follows thought. Wherever you place your attention
(concentration) energy follows. When you think failure, loss, and rejection, you
spray fuel on the fire. What to do? Go Lizard, do your eye movements and
cancel your depression by eliminating your frightening mental imagery; replace it with mental movies of success, improvement and personal growth.
Think about it. It is our secret strategy.
copyright © 2007
H. Bernard Wechsler