June 05, 2007

Focus

This morning before work I scored over half a million points on the flash touch-typing game Fingerjig. Sounds pretty good until you see that there are people out there who can regularly score over two million. Yowsa, those are some flying fingers!

As I work to maintain and improve my touch-typing skills, I notice, as I think Sassafras Mama has noted about her attempts at online daily SET, that focus really makes a difference.

And if focus is a muscle – regular readers will by now be familiar with my propensity for thinking of practically everything in muscular terms, maybe to compensate for my clear couch potato tendencies – if focus is a muscle, it's something that needs to be flexed, but not clenched.

My life is so multilayered these days; if I focus "like a laser" on one task, it's likely that I'm ignoring something else that needs attention. If I get tense about making mistakes while typing, I make more. If I'm trying to be especially quiet so as not to wake other members of my family first thing in the morning... CRASH!

So here's today's model for focusing without freezing:


This is D on a tire-swing traverse challenge. It's basically a series of five or so tires hung from a common overhead guy wire, each one just far enough from the next that you need to really swing and stretch in order to make the transition. The goal is to try to make it from the first tire to the last without touching the ground. And here he is, doing it. Holding on tightly, but looking determinedly at the next tire, aware already of the need to keep moving.

Another thing that helps focus? Support. Look at all the loving adults surrounding him in a "hands off but ready" kind of way.

The next time I start to lose focus or stall out? I'm taking another look at that picture.

(Thanks to the women of Mama Says Om
for their continuing inspiration.)

8 comments:

Tiel Aisha Ansari said...

I’m hosting the Ringing of the Bards poetry blog carnival, June 16. If you’d like to be included, leave a comment here or email me at tielansari @ gmail dot com any time through June 15.

Any style is welcome, but I’m particularly showcasing formal poetry poetry this time around.

Don’t forget to come back and see the carnival!

'n said...

I never noticed your muscle analogies, and wow, you'd think i would have. Very cool. And what a great post. Really, you use photos to illlustrate so very well. BTW I did the typing test too. Thatnks for the link. Never knew my speed before, scored just like you!

'n said...

ok, that typo in the last comment was a reall typo, i was not trying to be kute.

'n said...

OMG, that one was real too, but the k thing wasn't, naturally. I will definitely stop right here.

Jenn said...

789,000. The longest I've ever gone without using the space bar.

Stacy said...

I find that the challenge is to focus on one thing at a time. Easier said than done, but worthy of an effort.

Amy P said...

That is great. It is so important to keep moving while focusing. I often doget very tense and forget that many things need my focus and if I don't remain limber I will definitely (and often do) let something drop. Thanks for the reminder.

forgetfulone said...

Wow! That fingerjig games is rather difficult, and I've always considered myself a good typist. I loved your theory on focus. Great writing. Great picture, too.