When the stakes are high, the emotions usually match. And with emotions swirling, it’s not always easy to sit down and focus — fear of failure, test anxiety, procrastination, or busy schedules can get in the way of dedicated study or prep time.
We’re approaching that time of year again when college students in America prepare for their looming midterms and upcoming finals. But it’s not only exam season that brings do-or-die pressure; it’s studies of any kind, for, say, an essay, an education course, a certification, a project, or a big presentation. With so much going on, finding and keeping our focus can be challenging in an increasingly busy, tech-connected world. But if we can be calm and clear-headed, it’s easier to find that sweet spot of relaxed focus that’s key to us learning and retaining new information. This is where training the mind comes in useful. It’s through meditation that we improve our ability to place our attention on one thing for a fixed amount of time, without getting distracted. The more we build our awareness, the more sustainable our focus becomes.
Focus, focus, focus ...
Think of this month's featured collection as your very own study buddy. It's full of recommended meditations and exercises to help you knuckle down, find that focus, and nail whatever test or project is looming on the horizon. You got this. We got you. SITTING DOWN TO FOCUS Focus is innate; without effort. But we need to be in the right frame of mind, and create the right environment, before dropping into that focus. These exercises are designed to set you up in the best possible way.
TAKE A BREAK Sometimes, stepping away and taking a break can alleviate the pressure around trying to focus. Our focus should be effortless, and these exercises (and one animation) are designed to help you help yourself.
PRE-EXAM You’ve done all the studying and prep. Now the big day has arrived. View these exercises almost as a mini pep-talk — something to get your head in the zone, and to calm the nerves, for when it matters.
POST-EXAM It’s not always easy to unwind after a big exam/test so these exercises are designed to ensure you draw a line under your day and discover a deserved place of rest.
LEARN SOMETHING NEW Learning a new skill or taking on a new professional role can be daunting, so these exercises are tailored to help you get your head around what’s required while keeping your feet on the ground.