Home > Uncategorized > Hard to Stay Focus at Times? That Might be a Good Thing…

Hard to Stay Focus at Times? That Might be a Good Thing…

Do you feel hard to stay focus at times? Hang on, that might actually be a good thing…

In this transcription of a 1-minute podcast news titled “Mind Wandering is Linked to Your Working Memory“, it is reported that our working memory capacity is positively correlated with how often our minds wander. There is a link to the journal article also there. If you have a burning interest on that topic, it might be worthwhile to take a look.

So, that news strikes me personally, because I used to think that the inability to stay focus on 1 task at a time was always a bad thing. And sometimes I just can’t focus on 1 task at a time. “That’s just what my weakness is…” is what I used to think of myself. But then this news brings a new hope. It might be that my inability to focus at 1 task is because I have a good working memory capacity (which I hope is the case!). Which means I can handle a bit more complicated task better than a single simple one. Sometimes I just feel that it’s very difficult for me to sit down and do nothing. I have to do something. If not, my mind has to think about something. And I like to do at least two things at once, for instance lifting my pillow up and down with my legs while I’m lying on the bed and studying for school. It just feels better for me to have my legs busy with something else while my brain focuses on studying. I know this is not a very common habit (in fact I don’t do it so often anymore now), but anyway, yeah, it is worth mentioning I guess since I’m talking about this topic.

So what do you guys think? Do you think that this research is doubtful/not reliable/doesn’t make sense? Or is there anyone else feeling the same way that I feel?

  1. zmackay
    April 28, 2012 at 6:34 am

    I agree with you completely, and can totally sympathize with your sense of relief after reading this article/podcast! I’ve always wondered why I am completely incapable of getting work done in a library, or any sort of silent, isolated environment (I’m also convinced this is half the reason the SAT’s are so difficult: focusing was nearly impossible for me in such a removed setting!). I’ve always been criticized by parents and peers for finding crowded places like coffee shops more productive environments, and I as well chalked it up to a weird personal defect. Now that I think it through however, it’s actually starting to make a lot more sense. Having that white noise, that constantly changing, active backdrop challenges us to quicken the pace, accomplish more, because we are actively aware of the world moving and changing around us, and we want to be a part of that. I think that in these environments our brain has to work that much harder to differentiate that information that must be retained and that which is negligible. This is particularly interesting when considering our future career choices. I’ve always wondered how anyone can get anything done in an office setting for example. It makes more sense that some of us are pre-disposed to some environments and not others, and is probably the reason why we find certain tasks easy and others daunting. It also brings to mind the increasing numbers of people diagnosed with ADHD. Although this is clearly a very real condition, one has to wonder to what extent do the focusing techniques and capabilities of each individual, even when less extreme, affect the work they do in their lives.

  2. April 28, 2012 at 9:11 pm

    Focusing has always been a problem for me, pointed out by my parents and friends. Even as I write this comment, I am looking at different websites, listening to music, and trying to write. I have a very hard time focusing on one task. Also, like what was mentioned in the comment above, it is impossible for me to get work done in an environment without any noise in the background. I’m glad that there is a study to address my issues of focusing on a particular task. I also find that I am able to deal with a more complex situation than just one task, and I have always wondered why that was the case.

  3. avtheo
    April 29, 2012 at 1:27 pm

    This makes so much sense. I don’t know why, but lately I have been having even more trouble focusing on work than normally, which is not a good thing of course because finals are coming up. I don’t know if it’s the contemporary culture of so many distracting things that makes me lose my focus but maybe focusing on more productive activities like moving my legs to help me focus.

    I feel like a solution could be to be tested for ADD or ADHD. It could potentially work and help but who knows.

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