Focus is one of the most valuable skills you can cultivate if you want to thrive in our modern world. It’s the most critical part of deep listening, problem solving, decision making, and other everyday challenges that high performers encounter. But it can feel like the world prevents us from focusing. Technology, growing to-do lists, and clever marketing ploys steal our attention.
Luckily, meditation for focus can help us get it back.
A Guided Meditation for Focus and Concentration
How Meditation Improves Focus and Concentration
Regular meditation training can help you:
- Stay focused on tasks for longer periods of time than your non-meditating peers.
- Form stronger connections between regions of your brain, which contributes to focus.
- Block out distractions, like loud noises or an overflowing inbox.
- Fortify your anterior cingulate cortex, which is the part of your brain that maintains attention.
How to Meditate to Increase Focus and Concentration
Meditation has very few rules. You don’t need a special meditation teacher; all you need is your breath. Still, there are a few guidelines you may want to employ for an enjoyable, meditative practice.
- Find a comfortable location to meditate. It can be anywhere—from a spot in your office to a corner of your bedroom. We suggest meditating in a straight-backed chair or on a cushion on the floor. This helps you stay alert and awake.
- Wear comfortable clothing. If possible, wear clothes that minimize distractions. But don’t let your outfit stop you from sitting for a meditation session. You can still meditate in less-than-cozy business attire.
- Eliminate as many distractions as you can. Turn off tech devices that you’re not using, and ask anybody who may be near you to avoid disturbing you while you practice.
- Determine the type and length of meditation. There are many different types of meditation. Decide on which type you’ll be practicing and the length of your session before you begin.
- Develop a meditation routine. Create a routine that works for you, so you’ll always remember to fit in a session.
To learn more about how to meditate, check out our meditation guide for beginners.
Meditations to Improve Focus and Concentration
Most meditation techniques improve your focus and concentration. We suggest beginning with one of the following.
To do a mindfulness meditation, begin by drawing your attention to your breath. Focus on each inhale and each exhale. When thoughts and feelings arise, acknowledge them. Then return your focus to your breath.
Breath Counting Meditation
Another type of mindfulness meditation is a breath counting meditation. To do this type of meditation, focus your attention on your breath. Mentally count each inhale and exhale. (Each inhale and exhale combination counts as one unit.) When you reach 10, start over again. Distracting thoughts will arise, but that’s okay. Simply acknowledge them and return to your counting.
A concentration meditation is another type of mindfulness meditation. You can start concentration meditation by focusing on your breath. Then select something to focus on, like the flame of a burning candle. When your thoughts wander from the candle, acknowledge them, then return to the flame.
For beginning meditators or those who enjoy reminders to focus, a guided meditation app like, Primed Mind, is prudent. With guided meditation, a teacher guides you into a meditative state and helps you stay there with reminders to return to your breath.
You can practice a moving meditation during any movement type, like yoga or an afternoon walk. Draw your attention to the physical sensations of each movement. Release distracting thoughts as they arise.
Visualization is one of the most powerful ways to strengthen your focus muscle. You can use it in a way similar to the concentration meditation mentioned above, minus the need for physical props.
Visualization can also be used to generate specific mental states needed to achieve the aim of your focus.
Professional athletes and Olympians who need to be completely focused on the task at hand often use this technique to help boost their performance.
For a wide range of guided visualization meditations, check out Primed Mind.
Benefits of Meditation for Focus and Concentration
One of the primary benefits of a meditation practice is that it strengthens your ability to live in the present moment. This is a critical component of good focus.
Plus, using meditation to focus makes you more productive than trying to complete tasks by multitasking. Meditating for focus also reduces the amount of time your mind spends wandering. This is a good thing, since studies show that a wandering mind is an unhappy mind.
Benefits of Meditation for ADHD
Those with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, may have a particularly difficult time maintaining focus on a single task. The good news is that meditation for concentration can help here, too. Studies show those with ADHD who meditated regularly saw a reduction in their symptoms.
Frequently Asked Questions About Meditation for Focus
If you’re new to meditation, you may have questions. Here are some we hear often:
How Can I Meditate to Focus?
Although there are meditations dedicated to cultivating focus, you can start with a basic mindfulness practice. Draw your attention to your breath. Concentrate on each inhale and exhale, and let go of thoughts as they arise.
For How Many Minutes a Day Should I Meditate?
You’re not required to meditate for any set amount of time. You can see benefits from meditating for as few as two minutes each day. As your own practice progresses, you may try adding more time and seeing how you feel.
Using Primed Mind to Help You Focus and Concentrate
When you’re unable to focus, not only are you less productive, but you’re less happy. Even so, we know that learning to focus is one of the most difficult skills to cultivate in our modern world. It’s a skill worth learning, that will pay significant dividends for the rest of your life.
Regular meditators enjoy greater focus and concentration skills over time, plus they have an overall better quality of life. Primed Mind helps you strengthen your focus muscle with a variety of mindfulness, visualization, and concentration-based meditations. Check it out today and start focusing!