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Concentration exercises typically involve numbers, objects, words, and visualization. By practicing these exercises, a person might improve mental willpower and the ability to focus without distractions. Each exercise should be practiced daily, starting with five minutes on each and gradually working up to 10 or 15 minutes per exercise.
Counting concentration exercises might involve keeping track of steps while walking or counting backward from 100. Once a person masters counting from 100 to one without becoming distracted, a more complex exercise involves counting while skipping every third number. This should be done without any written aids to keep track of the progression.
A walking concentration exercise includes counting steps. At first, the count goes up to five steps, with one number added for each additional series of steps until 10 steps are taken. If a person loses track of during the exercise, he or she should start over by going back to counting five steps.
Concentration exercises can also employ a common object, such as a piece of fruit or flower. The process consists of intense observation of the texture, smell, color, or shape of the object. Care should be taken to avoid thinking about how the object is used, where it was purchased, or any other thought that takes attention away from the physical properties of the item.
Words might also be used in concentration exercises with repetition of a certain sound. In this exercise, the word is repeated mentally many times. A person practicing this exercise should not get sidetracked by the definition of the word or how it is used. The goal is to focus on the mental image of how the word sounds.
Once these concentration exercises have been mastered, visualization might improve the ability to focus. A person might imagine the object used in a previous exercise and attempt to recreate the sensations experienced. The mind might visualize the color, shape, and texture of the object from all angles.
A quiet place free from outside noise typically makes a good environment to practice concentration exercises. Some people use deep breathing techniques to relax before beginning these exercises. They might begin practicing five minutes each time and eventually expand the time to 15 minutes of focused attention.
Concentration exercise might improve study skills and control the mind’s focus when a task is at hand. When a person focuses on one thing at a time, he or she might accomplish work with less strain. Good concentration improves memory and might improve problem-solving skills.
I like to play concentration games that require you to recall strings of information you have been given earlier in the game. My favorite is one of the oldest, Simon. Simon is basically a little rectangular disc with four buttons around the outside. Each button is a different color.
The game plays out a pattern by lighting up the colors of the various buttons. You then have to repeat the pattern back to the machine by pressing the buttons in the same order. At first it is easy, only three or four buttons, but soon the patterns become quite long and it is a challenge to keep them in your mind. Once I played a game that lasted for 15 minutes.
I have always loved poetry. In the past it was a point of pride to be able to memorize and recite poetry but this is a very rare skill these days. I love poetry and am always looking for exercises to increase concentration so I commit myself to memorizing a poem a week.
Once I have it down I will try and recall it and previous poems whenever I have a moment alone with my mind. I think it keeps me sharp and what a joy it is to have all those beautiful words and ideas bouncing around your head.
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