We often associate success at work or in a creative endeavor to be the result of focus. With so many distractions in the world, people search for ways to focus their mind in order to get things done. While it is important to focus, does this mean that being unfocused is a waste of time?
Not necessarily according to Srini Pillay in a recent article in the Harvard Business Review. Titled, Your Brain Can Only Take So Much Focus, Pillay explains why too much focus can be problematic.
“The problem is that excessive focus exhausts the focus circuits in your brain. It can drain your energy and make you lose self-control. This energy drain can also make you more impulsive and less helpful. As a result, decisions are poorly thought-out, and you become less collaborative.”
Deliberately unfocusing the mind shifts it in ways that are extremely beneficial.
“When you unfocus, you engage a brain circuit called the “default mode network.” … Under the brain’s conscious radar, it activates old memories, goes back and forth between the past, present, and future, and recombines different ideas. … you develop enhanced self-awareness and a sense of personal relevance. And you can imagine creative solutions or predict the future, thereby leading to better decision-making too.”
Learn more about the power of “unfocus” and techniques to do it by reading the rest of the article.