How can we focus on difficult times such as trauma, loss, and grief?
In the complex process that we are in, most of us feel miserable, exhausted, drained, stressed, and have difficulty completing any work and focusing. Whether it’s day-to-day chores or responsibilities, or some kind of professional project, it can be difficult for us to concentrate from the smallest task to the biggest one. The sad news we face, the devastating events and social traumas we experience keep us from focusing.
Loss, grief, reversal of fate, traumatic stress, and similar negative factors can cause deep psychological and emotional destruction, practically turning our lives upside down. On the other hand, when our mind is occupied with news and relevant information, it becomes even more difficult for us to focus on something else. Also, distractions like notifications on our phones and TV talk shows that are always running in the background can make it extremely difficult to focus our attention in one place. Our disturbed sleep patterns, unbalanced diet, and the physiological effects of stress on our body can also cause our attention to be easily distracted. Well, is it possible to concentrate and focus in a highly stressed and difficult environment? Yes, with some adjustments. Here’s what you can do to make it easier for you to focus:
Understand the complexity of the process
First step; acknowledge and accept. Realize that the process you are going through is complex and that many people share the same feelings and struggles with you. In order not to overload yourself and increase the pressure on yourself, remind yourself that you often go through a difficult process and that it is impossible for everything to continue in the same order and not expect the same efficiency from yourself.
Remind yourself that you are trying to do your best
No one expects you to act as if nothing happened, that events and news will not affect you; because everyone shares the same pain and goes through the same difficult process. So don’t burden yourself with new tasks and responsibilities, and remind yourself that you did your best if something didn’t turn out the way you intended or was “almost perfect.” The mental and physical effort required to stay focused and get the job done while so many unpleasant things are happening around you is admirable in and of itself. However, if you are under pressure from your supervisor or colleagues in the workplace, you can share your situation with them and tell them that you are going through a difficult psychological and emotional process and that you are trying to do your best.
Try stress management techniques
Since stress is one of the biggest hurdles to focus, it’s helpful to relax as much as possible in a difficult moment and calm your thoughts and feelings. Through practices that relax both the body and the mind, such as breathing exercises, mindfulness practices, yoga, and meditation, you can increase your concentration time and reduce your stress levels. You can also relax and control the stress you feel by journaling or writing down only the feelings and thoughts that come to mind at the moment. Stress management can help you relieve pressure and take your focus away from stressors so you can more easily focus on what you want to do.
Take care of your overall health
Quite often, basic routines such as eating, exercising, and sleeping are disrupted during stressful and difficult times and the grieving process. However, it is necessary to pay attention to holistic health in order to focus and improve attention. A holistic approach to well-being primarily includes regular exercise, proper eating and drinking, and adequate sleep. For this reason, you should prioritize taking care of yourself, even if it’s difficult during stressful times. The relationship between stress and nutrition, if you like: What should be the nutrition in stressful and difficult times? and What can you do to fall asleep during stressful and difficult times? You can find tips from our articles that can inspire you on this topic.
Get support from nature
Do you know how important being outdoors is for your mental and physical health? Especially during difficult times when you feel physically and mentally tired and exhausted, you can focus on the healing power of nature. A short walk in the fresh air before something you need to focus on can help you rein in the negative thoughts in your mind and get back to yourself, taking a little break from your busy, frustrating agenda. After that, you can feel refreshed and focus your attention on the tasks and responsibilities that you need to complete. Stepping outside and looking away from your phone, TV or gadgets, feeling the sunshine and breathing in the fresh air will naturally make you feel better and reconnect with life.
Make a realistic plan
While balancing work and time can often be extremely difficult even under normal circumstances, it can become even more impossible under high stress. For this reason, you can start by prioritizing the tasks you need to focus on, taking into account your physical and mental state. After that, you can make time for the work you need to focus on and for yourself, with time scheduling that won’t bore or overwhelm you. For example, you can focus on the task that you need to complete first, then take a 10-15 minute walk break, move on to another task that will relatively tire you out or require less attention, and then do a short meditation if you like. . In this way, you can create more balanced and efficient planning and protect yourself from further wear and tear.
Even if you have a habit of doing more than one job at a time under normal circumstances, it’s helpful to kick that habit, especially when you’re going through a difficult process like social trauma. Instead of “multitasking” that threatens your brain health, you can focus more easily and for longer by spending your time and energy on one task at a time when you are facing a lot of stress. Focus on one thing if you’d like: You can also check out our article on how to be more productive by stopping multitasking.
Get out of the agenda
Yes, it’s hard. It is very difficult to turn off the TV and put down the phone when news of loss and destruction comes every minute from different parts of the country, but it is necessary to deviate from the agenda from time to time in order to protect your well-being, especially your mental health, and stay strong. If you want to focus and focus better, it’s good to take a break from technology from time to time. How can we follow negative news while staying sane? You can also be inspired by our article.
Get back to your routine
Routines, that is, activities that are repeated in a certain order every day, are effective steps to facilitate focus and concentration. For example, a ritual you do every morning can prepare your brain to focus on it when you wake up. While it’s perfectly normal for our routines to be disrupted when we go through difficult and stressful times, returning to a routine sooner or later is an important part of the journey to healing. Why is it important to return to the routine, “not forgetting what happened” after difficult times? Read our article and learn how to get back into a routine so you can focus more easily.
Finally, you may want to consider seeking professional help. Because everyone has a different reaction to stress and how they deal with grief; hence the path to recovery… You can try different methods to find your personal strategy that works best for you, and you can get help from an expert when you need it.
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