“I stay in the here and now, so I’ll take a bow.“
“Think less, achieve more.“
“Single-mindedness creates happiness.“
“Like a child a play, I ask my mind to stay.“
“Focus, focus, focus, focus.“
“Follow through, and I am true.“
Exercise: Focus on a Candle
Light a candle and stare at the base of its flame (*avoid staring directly at the light). Focus on your present feelings. Forget about all other thoughts. If your mind begins to wander, bring it back to the present moment: Say, “At this very moment, the candle flame and I are the center of life. I focus on the brilliant light that enables me to feel peaceful and calm. That is all there is in this moment.“
Guidelines: How to Focus
- Do you have several critical items to attend to at the present moment? Prioritize each of them in order of importance. Visualize yourself stacking these items in a file box with the most urgent item on top of the stack. You will focus on each item at the appropriate time.
- Do you have a job interview, important meeting, or big presentation scheduled for this week? Before you arrive, visualize the physical environment where this event will take place. Imagine your attire and the other individuals present. Clarify your goals and visualize yourself performing as if all went according to your plan.
- Take a walk in a natural setting. Pay close attention to the sounds, smells, textures, and focus on the birds flying about your head. Be present.
- Cook a meal. Concentrate on the textures, colors, and tastes of the food. Play music in the background, such as Zen meditation sounds or Classical and Baroque to facilitate focusing on the present task.
- Wash the dishes after dinner tonight. Focus on the textures of the soap on the glasses, plates, and/or bowls. Perform a thorough job, as you enjoy the quiet time alone and away from the stress of your job or other activities. Place the clean dishes on the drying rack and watch them glitter. Clean the sink and watch the sparkles after rinsing. This is the most important job now.
Al Huang, C. & Lynch, J (1992). Thinking Body Dancing Mind: Tao Sports for Extraordinary Performance in Athletics, Business, and Life. New York, NY: Bantam Books.