This is something that is on my mind today and at times it is something I struggle with as well. How can we be more present? Fully present with our minds, attention, body language, eye contact, etc. when we are with other people? According to Wikipedia here is a link on some of the research and studies that have been conducted in the area of attention span: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attention_span
According to a study conducted by Microsoft, we as humans have lost our ability to focus on something by 4 seconds in last 15 years. Here is a link to that study: http://www.cnet.com/news/goldfish-the-actual-fish-not-the-crackers-may-have-a-better-attention-span-than-humans/
So that is the data and the facts, so what do we do about it?
Here is what I say:
Actually Care: Yep, it’s not much more difficult than that. Care enough to give the person you are talking to your full attention.
Put down the damn smartphone: You are addicted to your phone. Turn it off or put it away.
Ignore it: If you are so addicted to your phone you can’t put the damn thing down, at least ignore as your text messages and emails are rolling in if you are talking to someone.
Respect: “But some people are boring!” Yep, I know they are. In some cases they know they are. Regardless if they are boring or not, let’s be human and show them the same respect that we would want ourselves.
Multi-tasking is BS: If I am told one more time that “I am a multi-tasker and I am listening to you and sending a text.” Let me pontificate on this a little more for the sake of argument here. There have many studies conducted in the area of multi-tasking and the ability of someone to do this effectively. IT IS IMPOSSIBLE! There is no way your mind/brain can focus on two things at once. You are either paying attention or you are doing something else, PERIOD. The proper term in the area of multi-tasking is actually called “switching”. Which means you are switching from one task to the other, which in most of the research it states that you are less productive when you are switching.
So to sum it all up. When you are with other people, be fully present. It really goes back to the golden rule, “treat others how you would like to be treated.”
To your success and your future.