43 Folders

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”What’s 43 Folders?”
43Folders.com is Merlin Mann’s website about finding the time and attention to do your best creative work.

Concentration strategies for students

Here's a wonderful tour de force on Concentration that's written for students and which includes tips on identifying distractions as well as a useful list of techniques for putting your attention where you want it to be and keeping it there.

A few I liked:

  • At the beginning of a study period, spend a few minutes to calm and relax your mind and body. (Try 'Focus on Your Breath' exercise, below.)...
  • Do not tell yourself off or tell yourself to concentrate. When you are thinking about not concentrating, you are not concentrating....
  • If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed by all the things you have to do in your life, remember that you can only do one thing at a time...

We have lots more here on battling distraction, including this excellent essay on "good" distractions by Paul Ford.

mpancha's picture

Re: State your objective

Looking back, I think that's why I got so much done today. My goal for the end of next week is to be able to apply virtualization to some servers at work.

I spent yesterday "learning about VM Ware", end of the day, I hadn't learned much. I had a lot of software downloaded and installed, but no clue where to even begin the first step towards the goal.

Today, I spent 2 hours in the morning learning about VMWare Convertor, and putting it to use to create 2 usable Virtual machines. Then I spent 2 hours learning "what can a VM Server do to help me centralize the VMs, what are the pros and cons". Now I have that answer in hand. Looking back, I'm about 10 steps ahead of where I was yesterday.

After reading your post, I realize what I did, and now just have to make it a point to split up this and future tasks into similar goal oriented steps.




An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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