Constrant interruptions from apps vying for our attention has a devastating impact on our concentration and attention. The usual response to such nuisance is to take a tech route like
- using apps to block annoying apps during specific times
- switching off notification
- using flight mode
- uninstalling apps and reinstalling only the ones we need ( the so called “digital detox” made famous by Cal Newport)
Others use analog methods that focus on tech avoidance like
- using a feature phone instead of a smart phone
- keeping the phone physically away from work area — thus making the work area “sterile”
- time boxing for social media
Unfortunately none of these methods directly help in building your ability to concentrate. They only remove the obstacles. You still need to build that ability yourself.
One of the easiest ways to build the ability to concentrate is to read a novel !
This might sound strange, but a paperback novel, preferably a fast paced one by your favorite author might just be what we need. It is not just an antidote to digital distraction — it is also an elixir that connects you with the paper and builds your ability to concentrate for a long stretch of time. You can start with a goal of reading one novel per month and gradually improve — before long, you will see that you are no longer reaching for the mobile phone for that dopamine hit that comes from checking Twitter or Facebook. With any luck, you can reclaim your former self — the one that existed before the apps destroyed your concentrating ability !
If you support Indie authors, you get good Karma too 🥰