How to Focus on the Present When Undergoing Tough Times

Photo Courtesy of Pexels – Gary Barnes

Sometimes we get so caught up in our problems that seeing a solution is impossible. Instead, we have a natural tendency to let the stress and anxiety dominate our thoughts. However, there is a better way to cope with this pressure than you may realize that can help. Therefore, the best advice is learning how to focus on the present when going through hard times.

Before allowing skepticism to take over, try becoming open to the possibility that even little things help to change a mindset. Actually, learning how to reframe those thoughts may be easier than you think once putting an effort to follow this advice.

What is involved is accepting the present and searching through it for peaceful moments during a day. If you can’t seem to get past troubled thoughts, then creating one is just as useful. Maybe you are an early riser and find that inner calm watching the sun rise while sipping morning coffee. Of course, that sense of tranquility differs for everyone. Something as simple as waking up to see the dog patiently waiting at the side of the bed can do it for others to usher in a morning smile and instantly relax.

Though it’s impossible to hold on to that initial peaceful moment, the next step on how to focus on the present is changing how many things that you’re trying to fix at once. Sometimes, we put too much pressure on ourselves only to accomplish less or nothing because of all that stress.

Instead of wasting so much energy on too many tasks at once, try focusing on a chore at a time. Doubters may argue that this technique would never work with all they have to do. However, the answer is timing each task to concentrate attention and energy solely to it. Set an alarm for about 10 or 15 minutes per task. The trick is not checking emails or other social media while working on that current task until the alarm sounds with permission to go to the next task. Don’t be surprised with how much easier it will be to think of solutions once that cloud of pressure is lifted.

The moment that stress starts to return is time to tune it out. Take a deep breath and steer those thoughts in another direction by focusing attention on something else. Notice the smooth feel of the desk or the rougher texture of an upholstered computer chair could be enough to help the mind escape from plunging back into a non-productive cycle. Employing our senses can be a tool when bad thoughts and anxiety close in when attempting to stay in the present.

Mealtime also can be beneficial to help us live more in the present. Try savoring the first few bites of a meal may sound ridiculous, but take the time to notice the texture, the sweet or sourness against your tongue of its flavor is also important before chowing down the rest. The reason taking more time with those first bites helps to really appreciate them for a more joyful experience to look forward to each time.

When tough times occur, there never feels like there is light at the end of that dark tunnel. Another helpful tool is starting a list of all the things that are good in your life. After all, family, friends, parents, spouse, boyfriend, girlfriend, employer, co-workers, employees, and pets are some to be grateful for. Imagine how lonely and dark life would be without them. You might have a dream job, a gorgeous home, lots of possessions, money, special talents, ccomplishments, and a fantastic education to jot down. Pausing long enough to notice all good can be therapeutic and rewarding when having those self-doubts.

Learning how to focus on the present when under stress may not solve all problems at once, but it is a method that can bring clarity to see solutions that may have been there all along. Reducing that unneeded stress also lowers blood pressure, helps sleep and immunity that would have been drained.

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