6 Exercises That Strengthen Your Attention Skills

Like anything we do, strengthening your attention skills comes down to repetition. It is no different than going to the gym, running daily, or going to yoga. It is only through repetition that we are able to improve upon what we have. Getting a baseline for your attention is key, so that you can adjust the exercises accordingly.

This is very important and not to be skipped. Set out on a task that you have, be it, reading, writing, or working in the yard. Determine the task, set a timer, and work for as long as you can before you lose your attention, this means checking your phone, stopping to talk, or just daydreaming.

You may be surprised at how much time is wasted just in those instances. This is your baseline and all of the exercises are designed with a 5-minute baseline in mind. If your baseline is higher, adjust accordingly, if it is lower, keep the same timeline.

Train Your Focus

● Set a timer for 7 minutes
● Focus Completely on working, reading, or the task
● Take a 3-minute break
● Set for another 7 minutes
● Each day add another 2 minutes to your focused work time. With an additional 1 minute if break time.

In 12 days, you will have increased your focus by 41 minutes of productivity followed by 14 minutes of break time. As soon as you're comfortable with what you are doing, make adjustments to length your sessions and decrease your break times.

The end goal is 50 minutes of productivity per hour with a 10-minute break session.

Meditation and Mindfulness

Meditation helps with numerous attention skills. When the hustle and bustle of everyday life has you fluster, take 10 minutes to close your eyes and re-center your thoughts. Research has shown that meditation can boost your attention span.

Where Meditation seeks to clear your mind, Mindfulness seeks to incorporate your mind and body with the surrounding environment. It is something that you can do at all times throughout the day just by stopping and observing your surroundings. The end goal is to have you be in the here and now. The entire idea of mindfulness can be summed up in one simple phrase, be where your hands are.

If you are at work, and your mind is at home it's time to practice mindfulness. This helps with attention span because it forces you to focus on the things that you are doing at the time.

Memory training

Increasing your attention span through memory training is something that you can do daily. A simple exercise is to read a story on your favorite news site, wait 5 minutes, then write a quick summary of that story, Then go back and re-read the story to see if you missed any key information. As you progress, read longer and longer pieces of work. Read it thoroughly and read it slowly. Like ribs, low and slow is the name of the game.
Attentive listening

Focus is important not only for the work environment, but also for the home environment. Being able to effectively listen and communicate with our loved ones builds rapport and intimacy. Logic shows that couples that have a high degree of intimacy tend to live better lives and stay together longer. Listening attentively is just focusing all of your energy on the person that is talking. The easiest way to do this is to ditch the phone.


The last exercise isn’t one that people would think of, but journaling can help you to increase your attention span. Just like working, journaling is your personal outlet for self-expression. If you are 1000 different places, putting paper to pen will help clear out the clutter.

Set a word goal for the day. A good milestone is 700 words. Write 700 words on whatever is on your mind, it doesn't have to be good. Just dump all the excess thoughts and go from there.

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