Focusing Attention

Mindful PDF & NOW-ing (II)

  • ​​This is a MINDFULGym tool that helps us to be more aware of what we’re doing by mentally labeling or silently verbalizing our physical activities. 

  • Sometimes we do things in autopilot mode; the mind is not fully in the present moment during activities. When this happens, we’re prone to forget things and make mistakes, e.g. forget to switch off the fan, fill petrol after paying for it, collect money after ATM withdrawal. We wear a shirt inside out/ back to front; we leave things behind (phone, purse, and laptop).

  • When we mentally label or silently verbalize our physical activities, we increase our attention on what we’re doing and thus reduce forgetfulness and careless mistakes. 



How To Multitask Mindfully?

NOW-ing - How to focus on doing one thing at a time?

1. Think of physical activities that we need to focus more on to reduce forgetfulness or mistakes, e.g. when we withdraw money from ATM, use a knife, drive to a new place, count money. You may also think of situations in which we're often absent-minded or careless. .

2. Mentally label or silently verbalize some of the steps associated with the activity, e.g. "insert ATM card," "942235" (key in pin number), "RM 500" (key in amount of money), "collect ATM card," "100, 200, 300..." (counting money).

3. NOW-ing could be used to support other MINDFULGym tools. For example, for enhancing concentration during Mindful Breathing, labeling the in and out breaths: "breathing IN, I know I'm breathing in; breathing OUT, I know I'm breathing out..." In Mindful Walking, we could label, "left...right...left...right."