What is attention?
Attention is essential to focus our minds on a specific thing as well as to focus on our daily tasks. Focusing the consciousness on a particular object or an idea at a particular time, excluding the other object or idea is attention. Consciousness means the awareness of something. So, attention can also be defined as being aware of a particular object or an idea at a particular time. Attention includes the first stage of perception. To perceive something, first, we have to pay attention to it.
There are three types of attention. Involuntary attention, voluntary attention, and habitual attention. While we walking on the road if we heard a sudden noise, our attention goes toward it. It happens involuntarily. When we study our lessons we pay attention to our notes voluntarily and in our morning routine, we pay attention habitually.
If we take an example for attention, there are several people in a classroom but our attention goes to a specific Person. This specific person changes from person to person and this is because our attention is dependent on several factors. There are internal and external factors on which our attention depends.
Internal factors that affect attention.
Interest is a prominent factor that affects our attention. There are so many things we have to do in our daily lives. Some of them are interesting and some are not. It is sure that you too had experienced yourselves that you are paying more attention to these interesting things than others. The specialty of this is, that those interests differ from person to person, and without interest, we cannot pay attention to a thing properly. How amazing the mind is? So the thing is, we have to improve our interests in good and efficient things instead of time-wasting things to succeed in our lives.
Motives can affect our attention equally. When we feel hungry, we pay attention to food. In there, hungry is the internal motive. When we lost something, we search for it. In there, losing a thing is the motive. If we take law marks for our exams, we can take it as our motive to do our best in the future. But, if you haven’t a motive toward a thing, you cannot do it further, because the loss of motive causes us to reduce our attention to it and without proper attention, we cannot do things correctly.
Past experiences improve our attention toward a thing. When a thing becomes more familiar, we can get it quickly. It means, it catches our attention rapidly. As an example, we can be more conscious of exam papers effectively by getting more and more experience by doing model papers.
- Expectancy and emotional stage.
Our expectancy and emotional stage affect our attention. When we expect a thing and then get it, we pay more attention to it. The situations that we expect our chief guest’s arrival and when it happens, all of our attention go to him. The emotional stage we are in is too affects attention. If you are in a good mood, you can pay more attention to a thing or an idea than you are in a bad mood. Not only the internal factors but also several external factors too affect our attention.
External factors that affect our attention.
As an easily and rapidly changing thing, and as also a thing that has a very large perspective, attention is dependent on so many external factors. To take our attention, there must be a stimulus for one of our sense organs, from the external or internal environment. As sociable animals, we get thousands of things to happen around us. So there are thousands of sounds, images, scents, and feelings around us. But for one time our attention goes to only one of them and to be the selected stimuli, the nature of the stimuli and the intensity of the stimulus is important. As an example, if there are several cats in a room, our attention mostly goes to the cutest cat. Cuteness is the intensity of that stimulus and when it is high, it catches our attention.
Happening changes within the stimuli also affect our attention. If we discuss it from an example, think about an online lecture or, it also same in physical lectures too, when the lecture is going on, nearly after 40 minutes, we feel bored. It causes us to lose our attention from the lecture. But, if there is a slide show with some pictures or videos in it, our stimuli are changed and it causes us to increase our attention toward the lecture.
Contrast is another factor that affects attention. Contrast means being extremely different. When there are black letters on white background, those letters take our attention quicker than any dark letters on a dark background or light-colored letters on a light background. This is how contrast affects our attention. This concept is mostly used in advertisements and notices to get more attention from people.
The novelty of the stimulus also affects attention. When something or someone is common to us, the attention toward it becomes low, while when something new happens or when a new person came to us, it gets our attention more easily. This is one of our general behaviors as humans.
So, the thing we have to take from this is, if we try to be new always, by improving our good qualities, manners, as well as our physical appearances like fashion and styles, and always try to add at least one new value to ourselves, we can renew others’ attention toward us as well as our attention toward ourselves. So, this will surely be inspiring and refreshing you, if you try it once.
Repetition affects attention in two ways. Sometimes when something is repeated, we can memorize it easily by paying attention to it, but, sometimes repetition causes us to reduce our attention toward a thing by becoming more common.
The factors that badly influence our attention span.
As humans, our effective attention span is forty minutes. Tiredness, hunger, experiencing pain, sleep, staying under stress, terrible fear, and taking drugs like factors that affect on attention span negatively and they cause to decrease in our attention span. So in those times, we can focus on another thing for a few minutes and then come back to the previous. In this way, we can overcome our loss of attention.
Attention is a very important thing. It helps us to be in sense always and also to understand others. We want attention. There is no age limit for attention seeking and by paying attention to them, we can make people happy. Proper attention toward our studies causes us to make it a success and accurate attention toward your occupation lead you to its top rank. importantly, proper attention toward ourselves can make us gorgeous.
By meditating, doing related exercises, concentrating, taking hand notes, and asking questions, we can improve our attention span. so, in those ways, let’s enhance our ability to pay proper attention and succeed in our lives.