What is Focus (on doing a task)?

Focus is the ability to concentrate on getting a task done without being distracted by unnecessary things. There are many more unnecessary things to be distracted by in today’s world, technology is a big one.

How do you manage Focus?

In short, here are 3 different strategies for you to try: Increase your Willpower, Decrease the Resistance AND Have Fun Properly. These strategies are all explained in further detail under the tabs above.

How do you “Increase your Willpower”?

Increasing your Willpower to do a task starts with you realising that your mind is stronger than you think and that you are in control of your life. From here, it is about taking the right steps to take better control of your mind, steps which have been broken down for you below:

Remember: You’re Not Perfect

Before starting Aspie Heroes, I got turned down from applying to many jobs. I thought I wasn’t perfect enough to get a job so I tried to be as perfect as I could be. This only made feel worse about myself as I lashed out at other people around me because I could not be perfect. I live a better life now because I accept my flaws as a human and try to only be the best that I can be.

Live in the Present

In the past I was told at school how bad being on Jobseekers Allowance was and years later ending up on Jobseekers. I also question whether what I am doing with my life including Aspie Heroes is the right thing for me and whether I can still do it in the future. I found that the past made me feel depressed and the future made me feel anxious. From this, it makes more sense to live in the present and see what comes from life.

Recognise that Small Victories lead to Big Triumphs

Small victories help you to grow as a person and eventually will lead you to big triumphs. For example, I was turned down constantly for jobs but sometimes I would get an interview which I saw this as small victory as it is rare to even get an interview. Even now when working on my website/project, anytime I get to do a talk or do an art workshop I see that as a small victory.

Build Regular GOOD Habits

A habit is something you do as part of a routine. Routines are helpful to autistic people but some of the habits we do are not such as watching YouTube a lot. A good habit to get into is getting up and going to bed at the same time each (week)day. I always like to get up at 8 am every weekday and go to bed at 10:30pm. Another habit to get into is exercise which can be as simple as a 30 minute walk; I like to run on a treadmill.

Meditation

Meditation is about the using breathing exercises to focus the mind away from all distraction to reflect on ourselves and our thoughts. Meditation is an easy habit to get into as you only need a minimum of 5 minutes a day to do it. If you are interested in trying meditation then Aspie Heroes has a Meditation page in the Health & Wellbeing section which can be found by clicking on “Explore” at the top this page.

How do you “Decrease the Resistance”?

Decreasing the Resistance to doing a task involves preparing things ahead of time. Down below, you can find a step by step process of how to do this:

Prepare your Workspace

The first thing to do is to prepare your workspace. For me, I like to clean my desk of unnecessary clutter by organising my any loose papers and putting any useless rubbish into the bin. Another way of preparing my workspace is to put on some light ambience/ambient music to listen to while I work so my mind won’t wonder off from the task at hand.

Remove any Distractions

The next thing I like to is to remove anything that might distract me. The main thing that distracts me is my smartphone as I can look at it for hours. Another way that I remove distractions is by using different web browsers for my work and my leisure. I use Safari for my work and Google Chrome for my leisure.

Turn Output tasks into Input Tasks

An Output task is a task you know you have to get done but are not sure how to start doing it. Input tasks are where you take an Output task and break it down into smaller tasks that you can easily manage and actually start to work on.

How does this work?

I am always trying to add new features to my website. The idea of adding a new feature is an Output task, a task where the idea is great but I struggle to work out how to actually create it. From here, I will think of a specific task I can do to start actual work on the idea. The task I choose to do is research.

Use the Pomodoro Technique

This is a technique I have recently adopted into my work and it has helped me get more work done in a shorter space of time. The Pomodoro Technique works by choosing a specific Input task and focusing on that task for 25 minutes (I do 20) and after that time period has past you then take a 5-10 minute break.

During the Pomodoro Technique

During the Pomodoro Technique you should be focusing only the task you have selected. If you start to think about something that has nothing to do with the task then write it down and come back to it later. When it is time for a break, you should use the time work on anything you have written down earlier.

How do you “Have Fun Properly”?

To Have Fun Properly means that when it comes time to do something for fun, you should try to have High Density Fun rather than Low Density Fun.

What is the difference between "High Density Fun" and “Low Density Fun”?

Low Density Fun is fun that requires very effort to do such as watching Youtube videos or checking your Facebook/Instagram accounts. The problem with Low Density Fun is that it is very easy to do but is not very rewarding to your wellbeing as it simply wastes time.

What is “High Density Fun”?

High Density Fun is fun that requires more effort to do but is a lot more rewarding in the long run. The rewarding experience of high density fun is not only having fun but also feeling a sense of accomplishment and acquiring something new such as a new skill, new friends or a new understanding about the world around you.

How can I have “High Density Fun”?

The best way to start having “High Density Fun” is by doing something you like to do but struggle to find the time and effort to put into it. For me, I struggle to find time to play video games and put the effort into watching films (these are normally considered Low Density Fun). It is truly best to have High Density Fun outside of the house but you can have it at home if going out isn’t an option.

High Density Fun Outside the House

Outside the house, you can go out for a walk or go bike riding for exercise. You can also go out to the cinema or to a cafe to get away from home. Why not socialise by meeting up with friends, even go shopping together. You could also consider joining a hobby group or take up a sport to learn a new skill and meet new inspiring people.

High Density Fun At Home

If the weather is awful or you don’t have the time or money to go out, you can do plenty at home. You could try your hand at learning something such as a musical instrument, cooking or anything you have wanted to learn. You could even read a book, draw or do colouring pages. You could meditation which can fit in at anytime of the day and takes as little as 5 minutes to do.

How our website can help!

If you are interested in doing colouring pages, meditation or learning how to cook, then Aspie Heroes has pages for these which can be found under the “Health & Wellbeing” on the Explore page which can be found by clicking on “Explore” at the top this page.

Your focus should be on YOU!

It doesn’t matter what anyone else is doing around you even if it makes then better or worse than you. The only person you should focus on is YOU and what you should be focusing on what YOU can do in the world around you, not what others do.