When we found out that our daughter struggles with poor focus, we were pretty discouraged. Every person is different. Which is why we had to come up with a method to train her brain to focus better. We’ve been using this exercise that was suggested by her therapist for a few weeks now, and incredibly, it has worked really well and it has improved her overall focus.
Before we started focus training with our daughter, her ADHD was considered moderate. Sometimes it interferes with school and home life, and sometimes it doesn’t. It just depends on the day. Interestingly enough, her ADHD symptoms didn’t manifest until she was on medication for her anxiety. We think that because her mind was less worried about things, we started to see the impulsive and inattentive behavior come out of her. So, we’re trying to battle these two disabilities at once.
We hadn’t thought about training our daughter to focus better. We had thought the only way to take care of ADHD was medication. Our pediatrician advised us to try to find some natural methods for working with her ADHD. She informed us, that medications for ADHD can suppress an appetite. We’ve already been concerned about our daughter not eating enough and our pediatrician was worried we would have her in the office more often for her growth.
So, as a disclaimer, please remember that we are not psychiatrists or psychologists. We’re simply sharing what has worked for us and our daughter. It may or may not work for you. Please know that our intentions are genuine and we hope that it works for you.
Focus and Concentration Method
The purpose of this training or method is to teach the person to be able to focus intently on one subject at a time. Then, have the ability to move on to a new subject and focus intently on that one just as well as the previous subject. While also teaching them to let go of the previous subject and not dwell on it.
So, grab yourself a timer and this free printable and see just how easy this focus training works. You will need two people for this exercise.
- Have the person doing the exercise make a list of 10 of their favorite things and 10 of their least favorite things. 20 total things.
- Instruct the person that they have 30 seconds to talk about 10 listed things.
- Set your timer to repeat 30-second intervals 10 times.
- Start the timer. The person has 30 seconds to talk about each of their favorite things.
- As soon as the 30 seconds is up, blurt out the next subject. The person CANNOT finish their thought or statement. They must immediately move on to the next subject. Even if it is mid-sentence.
- Once each of the first 10 subjects has been talked about, stop. Give the person a mental break for a couple of minutes.
- Repeat this process with 10 of their least favorite things.
Our Experience with Focus Training
We did this training for our daughter was because she was having problems focusing in class.
- She couldn’t let go of a thought when she felt like she needed to talk to a friend. She was so afraid she was going to forget what she had to tell them, so she had to talk to them in class while the teacher was in front teaching a lesson. This disrupted the class constantly. The teacher was sending me emails at least once a week. Moving from subject to subject trained her to let go of those nagging thoughts and move on to focusing on something important.
- She didn’t want to pay attention when it was something she wasn’t interested in. This is very frustrating as a parent. I’m trying to teach our kids that not everything we learn about is going to be interesting to us, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do our best to pay attention and learn from it. That’s why it’s important to incorporate the 10 things you don’t like. It’s not as fun to talk about things you don’t like, but you still need to focus on it.
There are many methods you can use to improve your focus and we have fortunately found that this works for us. We haven’t tried this as an adult, but I can assume that it would work similarly. There are some more wonderful methods you could use found here at this link if you’re interested in more methods that may work for you or your loved one. It never hurts to try, you never know what’s going to work for you. What do you do to improve your focus? Do you struggle with focus at all? Let me know in the comments below.