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Our attention is a valuable resource and how we manage it can help improve our productivity, relationships, and wellbeing. That’s according to Aubrey Warren, Sessional Academic at the Queensland University of Technology Graduate School of Business.

On June 29, Mr. Warren presented a personal development session sponsored by Isuzu UTE, Australia.

“Our attention is taken from us and is used for other purposes. The good news is we can take it back,” says Mr. Warren.

“The opposite of distraction is not attention but traction. When we’re really paying attention to things that have value to us, we want traction from us…We want traction on the things that matter.”

“This comes back to emotional intelligence. Am I aware and do I have the tools to manage that?”

Mr. Warren highlights the importance of “focusing on our priorities and managing and focusing on our energy.”

“Attention and focus are the raw materials of human creativity and flourishing. That’s what we have to feed in if we want to flourish.”

“The world we live in requires greater and greater adaptability. And we can only do that by focusing on what really matters.”

“One of the essentials in a distracted and busy world is the capacity to be mindful. Mindfulness has many forms. At its most practical is being mindful of what’s happening around us.”

To protect your attention, Mr. Warren says it’s good to be disconnected from technology from time to time. It’s also a good idea to choose the best times of the day to be focused on your tasks. Finally, he stresses the importance of focusing on high value and intentional things that are meaningful to us.

“If you want to grow, you’d better name them and you’d better name the behaviours that will allow that priority to be realized.”

When it comes to managing our energy, Mr. Warren says “time is a finite resource. The time we have is not just about the job that needs to be done.”

“The key for us is to find energizing interactions. Look for something that lift you up a little bit.”

He also stresses the “power of the pause”. While taking a break may seem counterintuitive, it plays a crucial role in managing our attention. “A high performer knows when to push and when to rest.”

Want to find out more about AfMA’s future personal development sessions? Click here.

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