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Some Tips To Have Better Concentration

Concentration of mind does not happen spontaneously. Indeed, it is a great challenge and calls for discipline. Nothing can be more challenging than mind control. Here are few tips to have better concentration.

Faith in oneself: Mind discipline is a great challenge. Mind control is nothing short of attempting to change the course of a river. The task becomes simpler to the extent we identify ourselves with buddhi and try to anchor ourselves in our true Self, the Atman. Minus this faith in ourselves, no faith in God can be meaningful.

Attitude towards work: Work can be a great spiritual discipline if during work we can observe the workings of our mind. The mind has an inherent tendency to flit across thoughts. The motion becomes perceptible especially when we do repetitive work. Such an observation can strengthen the ‘witness attitude’ towards the mind and facilitate the awakening of buddhi.

Swami Vivekananda tells us the secret of work: ‘When you are doing any work, do not think of anything beyond. Do it as worship, as the highest worship, and devote your whole life to it for the time being.’ Surely, putting this into practice involves struggle. But that is natural, since elevating the mind calls for work.

Ensuring the quality of sensory input: What we take in through our five sense organs leave their subtle impressions on our mind. More bad impressions make the task of mind discipline that much more difficult. The nobler the impressions, the less fierce the struggle with the mind.

Following a fixed daily routine: Sticking on to a daily routine can minimize the gyrations of an unruly mind. The mind presents all sorts of difficulties when made to follow a routine. It has revelled in brooding on several options, letting us do nothing. A strict routine does not afford it that luxury. Not letting the mind brood — this one discipline is a potent tool for mind control.

Again, the mind likes to follow the First Law of Motion: it prefers to continue to be in a state of rest unless acted upon by an external force. The mind gets jammed sometimes, especially when it faces discipline. Patient prodding of the mind and disciplining it with an awakened buddhi is the right external force to get rid of its inertia and make it behave.

Prayer: Prayer can easily gather a dispersed mind. It is a potent means to withdraw the senses from their objects, and internalize and focus the mind on the object of worship.

Source – Excerpts from Prabuddha Bharata February 2004 editorial