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High Focus, Low Strain

Cory Muscara



Cory Muscara



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High Focus, Low Strain

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hey, welcome back to

your Daily Mindfulness.

In this session, we're going

to discuss concentration.

So if I were to tell you to really

concentrate on something, to

really bring all of your attention,

all of your focus to one thing,

how would that make you feel?

Does that bring up a sense of ease

and calm or does it bring up a

sense of tension and forcefulness?

In my experience, most people associate

concentration with a forceful kind of

effort or a caffeinated, burrow your

head in your work kind of energy.

And I used to think the same exact thing.

I remember when I went to my first

meditation retreat, we were meditating

many hours per day, and I nearly burnt

myself out after the first six hours

because I was trying to concentrate so

strongly on the breath, so forceful.

But that's not actually

how concentration happens.

To develop sustainable, deep

concentration, we need to do it from

a place of calm and relaxation because

the mind naturally collects itself

when it's at ease, not when it's

frenetic, agitated and caffeinated.

That can lead to a certain kind of

concentration, but it's often short-lived

and creates more tension over time.

What we really need is

high focusm low strain.

So let's practice this right now.

As you're paying attention, as you're

looking at me on the screen, see if

you can bring your full focus and

presence, as if this were the most

important moment in the world right now.

Anytime the mind wanders, inviting it

back right into this moment, fully here.

But simultaneously, as you have this

quality of presence and concentration,

start to invite the body to relax.

Invite the jaw, to soften.

Invite the shoulders to

relax and be at ease.

Notice if the belly is tense,

maybe invite that to soften.

Still keeping full presence, full focus.

You may notice periodically that

the more you try to pay attention,

the more the body starts to grip.

And so our practices is to

collect the awareness, but

simultaneously soften the body.

High focus, low strain.

So nice job.

This is a practice that you

can take into your day-to-day.

It's especially effective

when we have a lot going on.

Maybe something at work or taking

care of our kids, or having a lot of

conversations or calls throughout the day.

As you're going through that,

see what it's like to practice

bringing full focus, full care,

attention, and concentration, but

simultaneously being completely at ease.

I think you'll find that this

is a much more sustainable way

to cultivate concentration.

So I'll talk to you in the meditation.

As always, thank you for

your practice and take care.

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