February 21, 2018

A more distracting environment than there’s ever been?

Woman with BlackberryIs this true?

Watching my early teenage years children struggle at times to focus on their homework in the face of diverse and increasing electronic distractions, I wonder whether their generation is growing up in the most distracting environment there has ever been.

Of course, living in a war zone might be rather worse. That’s true.

But assuming we’re not in physical danger, is our ability to focus more challenged than it’s ever been?

If so, that reality isn’t going to go away, and no doubt it’s going to intensify.

So it seems to me, we need to develop more skilful ways of coping; of sustaining our concentration. In fact, we need to get better at that just to stand still. We need more “one-pointedness” – the ability to focus on just one thing at a time.

Paradoxically, the modern world may drive us to be stiller in order to cope with its character; to be able to ignore its apparent insistence when we choose. Actually, the freneticism might force us to be calmer.

What do you think?

Are there more distractions that ever?

If so, how should we respond?