4 min read ⌚
Strategies for Overcoming Distraction, Regaining Focus, and Working Smarter All Day Long
It’s the 21st century, so, of course, you have a problem with focusing and concentration. Fortunately, David Rock is here to teach you a trick or two.
Because, even though, he doesn’t know you, he knows: “Your Brain at Work.”
About David Rock
David Rock is the co-founder and Director of the NeuroLeadership Institute – a coinage he invented. He is the co-editor of the “NeuroLeadership Journal” and the author of three books, which, besides the one we’re summarizing, include “Quiet Leadership” and “Coaching with the Brain in Mind.”
Find out more at https://davidrock.net
“Your Brain at Work Summary”
We’ve written about your brain quite a few times before. And there are several reasons for this.
First of all, it’s possibly the most important organ of your body, the one which distinguishes you from the rest of the animals. Secondly, not much is known about how it functions. And, finally, we’re only starting to begin understanding how we can control it.
In “Your Brain at Work,” – a book with its own blog – David Rock summarizes some of the most important recent findings on the subject. And teaches you how you can use them to improve your productivity and overall happiness.
Because let’s face it, you need such help!
The world is full of distractions – as never before in human history – and you really need to learn how to focus.
However, this is far from an easy task! But, not because of you, says Rock; it’s because of your brain. As complex as it is, it has “surprising performance limitations.”
For example, did you know that your brain can only do five things with the information which reaches him?
Namely, it can understand it, decide something about it, recall some other relevant information, memorize it, and/or inhibit it. And Rock warns you that in order for your brain to work properly, you need to think of these five functions as actors on the stage of your brain. If they don’t have the proper commands, the information will be lost or misunderstood.
Which brings us to the most important information concerning your brain. And yes: this info asks to be understood, not inhibited.
Let us try to put it delicately:
Your brain is, actually, incapable of doing that. What you’re actually doing when you’re not singletasking is quickly switching from an assignment to the next one.
How do you think your brain feels?
In a state of chaos? Messy? Tired? Overwhelmed?
Of course, it’s all of those things! But, the strange part is that some of these feelings are not inherently bad. It’s just that they need to be in the right amount.
Because your brain works as bad when it’s not aroused as when it is over-aroused. So, try to find the right level and the upsides of stress!
The same is true about your emotions as well. They activate too many brain regions at the same time. So, you have to harness their energy – instead of being subjugated by it.
And one more thing:
You are not living alone on this planet. And most of the beautiful things that have happened in the past few centuries were products of collaboration.
However, in the future, when working with someone, don’t forget that he is just like you. And that his brain capacity is as limited as yours.
By the very design which makes it so brilliant.
Key Lessons from “Your Brain at Work”
1. Your Brain Is, In Fact, Very Limited Organ
2. Reappraise Your Emotions and Stop Them from Messing with Your Brain
3. Collaborate Effectively: Learn What SCARF Is
Your Brain Is, In Fact, Very Limited Organ
When it comes to handling information, your beautiful brain is a fairly limited piece of hardware. Namely, its software is preprogrammed to do no more than five things with it: understand it, react to it, memorize it, recollect it, inhibit it.
Everything that happens in your brain is just a product of the recombination of these processes.
Reappraise Your Emotions and Stop Them from Messing with Your Brain
Your emotions are messy. They activate too many areas of your brain. Use “cognitive reappraisal” to control them. First label them, and then you can do quite a few things with them. Like reframing, reinterpreting, reordering, and repositioning them.
But, hey, you should know this already: we’ve talked about it already.
Collaborate Effectively: Learn What SCARF Is
Whether you like it or not, collaboration is part of your everyday existence. Well, there are ways to collaborate more effectively. Rock explains the SCARF method. It’s an acronym which stands for status, certainty, autonomy, relatedness, and fairness. These are cognition’s social elements.
Which means, both you and your partners need to be aware of them so you can work together properly.
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