Monday, November 18, 2013

The Art of the Focus: Achieving Centerness and Staying Focused

(update at 13:18:18)

Most of us are surrounded by near-bearable noise regardless of our locale. Occasionally, it interrupts our ability to think strategically.  When the volume of the noise is greater than the bio-signal that is flowing through our brains,  the progress for completing the objective becomes nil.  

Using noise-cancelling headsets  and turning off our mobile devices could only go so far. 

Pragmatic Solution #1
Finding silence and solitude is the name of the game.

Going to coffee shops is not a good idea.  Most of the time, the noise is barely tolerable. It is rare to find a place with zero noise setting.   If you are into the hustle and bustle of a noisy surrounding, go to the coffee shop or your favorite fast food chain. 

Fwiw, most successful strategic thinkers do not strategize at that setting.  It is a productivity killer.

The near-perfect sanctuary is usually that one library and finding that quiet, clean and well-lighted room while avoiding the crowdedness is always a challenge.  An associate who lives in Michigan, recommended a few  interesting "quiet" places located in the University of Michigan.

Pragmatic Solution #2
Our previous posts introduced the importance of staying centered.  Some does it through the practice of Taijiquan, Baguazhang, Xingyiquan, Yi Quan, Liu Hop Ba Fa Quan and Yoga.
To build this state of focused centerness (zhong zheng), one must do the following:
  • Relax while centering your attention to your breathing.
  • Connect to the ground by relaxing the weight of your body downward while centering your attention to the movement
  • Center your breathing to the ground while centering your relaxation and your connection to the ground
  • Calm yourself by minimal movement while centering your attention to your entire being
  • Feel the wholeness of your being while performing the four mentioned "centering" points.  
One knows when he/she has achieved the fundamental stage of this practice by being able to hear their thoughts while working. 

Side Notes
  • Our Cook Ding Kitchen associates ( principals of a martial arts blog)  usually practice a daily 60-70 minutes session of yi quan-based standing exercises.
  • Spending hours on replying to irrelevant emails and texts is also a productivity killer.  It usually disrupt the ebb and flow of the workflow.  
  • If you think that there is a power to becoming quiet, read this book.
We will elaborate more on our unique set of pragmatic practices.

Comments From The Compass Desk

To strategize properly, one must remember that silence is golden. ...  A successful strategist is usually centered and focused.  These attributes enable him to devise a well-planned and prepared strategy while being mindful that proper preparation propels profits. 

Whether you are in a library or out in the streets of New York, stay centered and focused on your objective while being mindful of your settings and beyond. 

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