attention

Pay Attention Procurement!

In the five-part Procurement Foundry Slack series “Fix Your Zoom Body” with health and wellness advisor Agetha Degasperi, one of the topics of discussion was meditation for mental performance. Pay attention procurement!

If you are tracking posts on social media, such a session is not only a good idea but actually necessary. Yes, the pandemic is the proverbial elephant in the room contributing to our overall stress level. However, there are more immediate and direct things with which we have to deal beyond a big picture view of what has transpired over the past year.

In today’s article, we will focus on one of these stressors that will help us recognize the value of having islands of peace through personal meditation and what action we can take to harmonize our senses.

Agility or Attention

There are no shortages of articles talking about the importance of agility and adapting to dynamically changing situations in real-time.

Being able to fast-switch from doing one or multiple things to doing something else is a great attribute—right? But is this ability to “adapt” a sign of agility or an inability to pay attention?

According to one recent social media post promoting a session with an Olympic coach on focus and perseverance, what we consider agility may be a sign of a short attention span.

Based on statistics in 2000, the average attention span of a human being was 12-seconds. While that seems a tad short, buckle up because, as of today, our ability to focus or pay attention is down to 8-seconds, which is apparently 1-second less than an average goldfish’s 9-seconds. 

Sorry, I had to answer the phone, respond to a text, and get ready for a Zoom meeting—what were we discussing?

What’s the Hurry?

Like the encouragement to “fail fast,” the term “think fast” is now commensurate with the words agility and adaptability.

For example, how many people read beyond an article’s headline before clicking the “next” button or move on after the first paragraph. Perhaps it is in our nature to move in tandem with the speed at which we receive information.

Once again, pay attention procurement!

We can recall the early days of the Internet when the 20 seconds or so you had to wait to get online was considered fast. Now anything longer than a fraction of a second is too long. Even TED Talks are being “shortened” to accommodate the demand for “quick feed” insights that may or may not inform.

The fact is that speed does not necessarily mean you are agile. It could mean that you are overloaded. In such circumstances, adaptability may have more to do with treading water than adapting.

Given the above, what action should you take to retake control? At this point, 15-minutes of meditation at your desk sounds like an excellent idea. What do you think?