Do you know what the most valuable thing in life is?
It’s not money or time.
Wherever your attention goes–time and money flows.
All the social media and advertising companies know this, which is why they constantly battle for your attention.
Attention is your mind’s ability to direct consciousness.
Think of consciousness like a light, and your mind like a way to focus that light. Attention is wherever your mind focuses the light of your consciousness.
What you attend to is what you become conscious of, and what you become conscious of is what you learn, remember and understand.
The value of attention is even in our language.
Our teachers always told us to “pay” attention. Attention is the “cost” of whatever you want to learn or do in life.
It’s important to understand how attention works.
Attention exists on a spectrum, and can be either focused or open.
Focused attention is concentration. It’s where you focus on one particular thing like the feeling of a muscle in an exercise.
Here your attention is focusing consciousness like a spotlight on one object.
On the other end of the spectrum is awareness, this is where we open up our attention to include all the experiences within our consciousness.
Here attention is like a floodlight illuminating all the objects within the field of your consciousness.
Think of attention like a muscle you need to train. If you don’t train it, it doesn’t grow and actually atrophies.
In fact, we actually train our attention poorly when we only give it “easy” objects to focus on like entertainment and social media.
Attention is best trained through inner practices done in meditation. In meditation we practice focused concentration, and open awareness to build the muscle of attention.
My question for you is, do you understand the value of attention? And if you do, how do you train it?