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The Sykes Group
2476-115 Nimmo Parkway
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Virginia Beach, VA 23456
Tel: 757-427-7032
Fax: 757-427-0929

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Communication Article:  May I Have Your Attention, Please?  Five Ways to Retain Focus and Stay in the Moment

By Joy Fisher-Sykes

Today many of us frequently feel stuck in overdrive - days crammed with too much to do mixed with an unhealthy dose of frequent distractions, all vying for our attention at the same time.  This can cause our minds to be constantly racing which, in turn, can make focusing our attention seem like an impossible task.  Is it any wonder we find it difficult to pay attention for more than ten seconds at a time without a sense of dread that we might miss something? 

When our attention is spread too thin, we run the risk of putting our relationships in peril.  Once others believe you have willingly disregarded their presence, whether intentional or not, your inattentiveness can foster ill-feelings including anger, annoyance or resentment.  Whether you find it difficult to remain attentive with customers, peers, family or yourself, the ability to remain connected without daydreaming is possible.  So how do you stay present and in the moment?  The following are five ways to help keep your head in the game and strengthen your attentiveness skills:

§       Practice doing one thing at a time

Whenever possible, do one thing at a time.  Whether it’s your children describing their day or your partner boosting about a big accomplishment, stop what you are doing and focus solely, giving this person your undivided attention. 

 

§       Make contact

As you focus solely on the conversation, make eye contact.  You’ll find it’s difficult to maintain eye contact and multitask at the same time.  Listen with your entire being (mind, body, spirit) and show others you are present and completely focused on the conversation – smile, nod, raise your eyebrows, shrug your shoulders, light up your eyes.

 

§       Slow down

Many of us are conditioned to be in a rushed state of mind because we live in a society that demands achievement be attained quickly.  This is precisely the reason many of us find it so difficult to concentrate on one thing at a time.  In the rush of “doing,” the special moments pass us by.  Make a commitment to slow down and focus on the here and now.

 

§       Commit yourself

There are conversations we anticipate will progress quickly, and others we know will be time-consuming.  When engaged in conversation, commit yourself to the time necessary to complete the dialogue.  If you find the time allotted is insufficient to conclude the talk, arrange for a mutually beneficial time to complete the discussion. 

 

§       See every interaction as an opportunity to connect

Every contact you have with someone presents an opportunity to connect with that person, to learn a bit more about them.  It’s important to remember you can choose to relate with others positively or negatively.  Whenever you come upon someone, always ask yourself this question – “What will I miss if I choose to tune out?”  Listen to your response, and let this guide your actions and your choice. 

 

The ability to remain in the moment is a matter of personal choice.  Make a commitment and follow these simple steps and you’ll expand your interpersonal skills to new heights of success.

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The Secret to Creating Great Communication

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Five Secrets to “Thinking on Your Feet”

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Dr. Seuss's "The Cat in the Hat" Will Help You Get Your Point Across! (Yes you can, here's the plan!)

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Show Your Customers You Care

Want to learn how to communicate with authority, stay focused, and master your interpersonal skills? Our Master Your Attitude, Team Building, Life After Downsizing, How to Develop the Leader Within You, and How to Say No and Achieve More communication skills programs can help you lead others to the next level.  Also read our articles on motivation, goal setting, etc. Call us at 757-427-7032 or e-mail us at info@thesykesgrp.com.

Joy Fisher-Sykes is a professional speaker published in the areas of communication, time  management, and teamwork. She works with business and government organizations who want to reach the next level of success and individuals who want to perform at their best. You can email her at jfsykes@thesykesgrp.com, call her at (757) 427-7032 or visit his Web site at www.thesykesgrp.com.

 

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Keywords:  Joy Fisher-Sykes, Joy Sykes, The Sykes Group, interpersonal relationship, listening skills, conversation, present, listen, interpersonal skills, communication skills, communicate, focus

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