With emergence of new technologies leading to slew of digital devices, we have started living in an age of short attention spans.
Concentration, clarity and focus have become difficult to acquire, as there are lots of distractions in our lives.
It also gets frustrating when we aren’t able to concentrate in our important aspects of life; and to a huge extent, this affects our decision making leading to confusion and chaos.
To mitigate this, it is imperative for us to practice meditation for concentration and clarity.
This article will ensure that you will get to know how to practice meditation for concentration and how it benefits us in every aspect of life.
What is meditation for concentration, clarity and focus?
Meditation for concentration, clarity, and focus inculcates a sense of mindfulness.
This type of meditation brings upon an ability to concentrate on one thing at a time – be it an image, book or even a situation.
More often than not, we are preoccupied with many things in our life, and we fail to look at things in their uninflected form.
This happens because we are at that moment, but we are not actually living in it.
We are overwhelmed by other thoughts and worries of our lives. This happens due to our life problems, which leads to a sheer lack of concentration, clarity and focus in life.
Meditation for concentration makes you free from every other thought and enables you to live in the moment.
How to practice meditation for concentration, clarity and focus?
Basics of practicing meditation for concentration can be divided into three parts.
1. Find a place to meditate for concentration
The place where you meditate should be private and free from all kinds of distractions like sounds of vehicles or pets.
Finding a private place for concentration meditation will allow you to sit throughout the session without getting disturbed.
Many people choose corner of a quiet room or sometimes you might prefer to go outside in nature to meditate. It can be sitting under a tree, seashore or a garden.
All you need to do is find the best time to meditate and ensure that there is no disturbance. Choosing one particular place and always sticking to it will help in increasing your concentration.
It works at a subconscious level. Once you make it a routine, like going to same place at the same time for concentration meditation; it would subconsciously help you to meditate for more concentration.
2. Sit in a comfortable position to meditate for concentration
It is important that whenever you are doing meditation for concentration, you need to be in a comfortable posture.
If you are clumsy then you won’t be able to concentrate, as your brain will react to the discomfort.
You should ensure that you are wearing comfortable clothes that don’t cause any kind of discomfort like pinching or lack of circulation.
If you wear tight cloths, then you may not be able to sit for long time and practice concentration.
You also need to decide a posture for meditation you are comfortable in. It may be cross-legged sitting posture or sitting on a chair.
Some people do it in standing posture or even lie down. It depends on you, but make sure that your body is comfortable in the posture, so that there is no body pain at the time of concentration meditation.
3. Decide on how much time you want to dedicate to meditation for concentration
Time plays a vital role during initial days of practicing concentration meditation. You need to begin with short span of time.
The idea behind choosing less time, say 5-10 minutes is to get accustomed to concentration meditation.
If you set time for one hour from the very beginning, then there are chances that you will fail in your initial days and then eventually quit it.
It is preferable to gradually increase your time you dedicate for concentration meditation.
You should use a timer or alarm instead of a clock. This will ensure that your mind doesn’t face distraction of keeping a check on the time.
Moreover, you can exactly figure out when to increase the time for concentration meditation.
There are also meditation timers available, which you can use. However, a simple timer will serve the purpose.
4. Allow your eyes to relax before you begin meditation for concentration
Before you begin concentration for meditation, ensure that your eyes are relaxed.
Remember that pushing yourself hard to concentrate from the word go may cause strain to your eyes.
So, it’s better to close your eyes for a while and relax before starting meditation for concentration.
Concentration for meditation will require visually focusing on an object, so it’s really necessary that your eyes are at ease before you start.
You need to make sure that the muscles around your eyes and your eyelids are not under tension during the process.
Many people prefer meditation for concentration after taking a nap or in the morning when their eyes have got enough rest. This will also help you to concentrate for a longer time whenever you want to give more time to concentration meditation.
5. Start focusing on your object of concentration meditation
Before starting the process, you need to decide on the object you want to focus on. It may be an outside object or simply your breathe.
When you are concentrating on that object, you need to completely focus on it.
I will recommend to start you’re your breath, because it’s the easiest and will boost your concentration power in initial days, like how it worked well for me.
It’s also advisable to change your object of concentration and experiment with your method.
However, I personally never change for at least a month. I think concentrating on same object for long will make it easy as you get habitual to it and it works well at subconscious level.
If you are choosing to concentrate on your breath like I did, you need to concentrate on one breath (inhalation and exhalation is equal to one breathe) at a time, and then start all over again.
Remember that you are doing concentration meditation for yourself. It’s not a task assigned by someone else, so you don’t need to stress yourself.
6. Make sure you are not distracted by other thoughts during concentration meditation
I think this point is self-explanatory. Once you are sitting for concentration meditation, it is obvious that there is no scope for other thoughts.
However, if you have other thoughts in your mind, you can always start from word go again. It is important to know that if you are overwhelmed with other thoughts, then it is better to stop, take a break and start it again.
You also need to take out some time from other things to do this.
Remember that to acquire more concentration, focus and clarity in life, you need to meditate.
So, you can’t allow other thoughts distracting you each time. Give some efforts, and at the same time don’t stress yourself.
Approach the process of concentration meditation as practice of choice and not compulsion. This will help you at an emotional level.
Choice of posture in concentration meditation
You already know that you can position your body in any way you can but you need to be comfortable.
You can consider following postures that are supposed to be the best to practice meditation for concentration.
If you are someone who sits for whole day at work, this is the best posture for you.
This allows meditation for concentration to be free from all distracting elements.
Stand with the weight on the balls of the foot and bend your knees so that your back is straight.
You can sit on a couch or some people (including me) prefer a separate mat for meditation.
Beside that you can also use chair. If you are going to sit on your mat, then you can choose ‘Zafu’ position or cross-legged.
Your posture doesn’t matter as far as you are comfortable and able to concentrate.
3. Positioning your hands
You can position your hands on your thighs or you can also try Buddha position if you are comfortable with it.
You can place your left hand above your right hand while doing concentration meditation.
Object based meditation for concentration techniques
In concentration meditation, there are many objects you can focus on. It depends on your choice.
However, other than your breath, you can choose one of these two, but you shouldn’t limit yourself to both.
Remember that meditation for concentration is for training your mind to concentrate and it doesn’t matter which object you choose.
Light a candle and focus your full attention towards it. It is called Tatrek meditation.
You should sit away from candle, so that is easy to concentrate on candle and your eyes don’t get hurt.
You also need to ensure that you are sitting in a quiet and wind-free space. A flame flickering due to wind will create tension to your eyes and it will be very difficult for you to concentrate, and it is also possible that the flame will extinguish in some time.
2. A sacred text
You can pick a book pertaining to your religion or a sacred text from any book to focus at the time of concentration meditation.
While you are reading the sacred text, one particular phrase may draw your utmost attention.
That will become your meditation mantra. Repeat it and concentrate on it.
The meaning of words doesn’t matter. Words are just mediator to your meditation for concentration.
Benefits of meditation for concentration
There is a reason 8% of US adults use meditation for their well-being. Meditation for concentration and for that matter any type of meditation has lot of benefits.
Incorporates ability to focus on things
You will have clarity of thoughts and will be able to focus on one thing at a time, which will beneficial to you in every aspect of your life.
Memory power and IQ
Meditation for concentration works on a subconscious level as I already mentioned in above paragraphs. This will inculcate a better memory power.
Once you start focusing on the moment, there is a better chance that you will be able to remember things.
It’s because of inattentiveness and hotchpotch thoughts that cluster our minds, we tend to forget things.
Concentration meditation helps us to remember things.
You also start showing better presence of mind, which helps you solve problems at business or home. In short, meditation for concentration enhances your IQ.
Meditation for concentration improves your breathing, immunity and slows down the ageing process.
Moreover, it brings upon equanimity in you leading to a better emotional balance, which makes you less susceptible to vulnerability and depression, subsequently helping you make better decisions.
This in turn reflects in your concentration power.
According to Anxiety and Depression Association for America, 6.8 Million adults are suffering from Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), which has roots in that fact that we don’t live in the present moment.
Mere lack of mindfulness causes thought distractions and we indulge ourselves into thoughts of future or past.
However, we forget that it is the present moment which shapes our lives. Meditation for concentration can play a vital role in your life by instilling mindfulness in you and you start living in the present moment, which subsequently removes all the worries of future and past regrets.
From a perspective, concentration meditation also contributes to your wealth and prosperity because concentration, focus and clarity help you perform well in professional life too.
You can choose to go to a meditation center, which will give your meditation journey an early boost, to learn basics of meditation for concentration quickly.
However, meditation for concentration is something that you can learn yourself. To start with, you can follow the basics mentioned in this article and then reinvent your own concentration meditation technique.
Allen Wei is someone who believes in living his best life, focusing on balance, happiness, and relaxation. He fosters a positive lifestyle in terms of his body, mind, and environment, and he is a huge proponent of learning to be balanced via relaxation techniques integrated into our busy lives.