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What does it mean to “pay attention”?
Attention represents the key to so many things related to our lives, as an example, we need to pay attention even to walk across the street or even little things, because those smallest things can make the biggest differences in our life. We know our relationships are more satisfying with our families, relatives or any other else’s if we might be used to pay attention better than we used to. We know attention is important, but we may not know that attention has direct results. People focus their attention on the unnecessary. Therefore, we may lose many opportunities to make life a success.
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Paying attention remains the first step in the learning process. The more we pay attention to our role of life, the more skilled and powerful our choices and action will be. We have to learn and study for the success of our life. This means we have to pay attention to go through our goals. So, paying attention plays a huge role in human life. Even if we are not paying attention to the road when we are crossing the road, we might be going to face big trouble. It is easy to pay attention to things that are interesting and exciting to most of us. But it is more than difficult for most of us to pay attention to things that are not interesting or exciting. If our learning process is interesting students will use to pay attention a lot. When something is not interesting it is easier to become distracted and it is more challenging to move to other topics and activities. So that means attention enables individuals to gain experiences in their everyday life. This means we gain to pay our full attention to the task of learning, get rid of distractions, and focus on what is important. As it involves our physical and mental health, attention helps to remember things. When we pay attention to a certain specific area or object, we want the concentration to help us to retain them carefully. As Waldman states, “What happened to me? How do I fight it? Where did my concentration-oooh, cheese.” (Waldman 2), we will be lost everything when we are not paying attention.
Attention differs from ourselves then and now. Waldman states how a person can lose herself in a novel in their childhood by stating, “She will tell you about how, when she was small. She could lose herself in a novel for hours, and now, all she can do is watch tweets swim by like glittery fish in the river of time-she-will-never-get-back.” (Waldman 2). It says how becoming a lost in a novel in childhood for hours and hours but now when we are with electronics it lacks our attention. As growing older, we pay less attention because we getting to use electronics now. We came to a different world differs from where we started, especially from our parents and grandparents. As Waldman states, “We’ve landed in a different world from the one we started out in, but unlike our parents, we can’t retreat from it; we have to inherit it. We worry we’re not up to the task.” (Waldman 4), we started our childhood in the world with no electronics, that is why we paid much more attention to books when we were in our childhood and we spent hours reading a pile of books. Even though we use the internet to read more now, the attention we paying to the internet will never be as great as the attention paid to the book when we were kids. So, in ‘Reading Insecurity’ article Waldman suggests what we have to do to improve our attention by stating, “So maybe the answer is just to close the laptop and read more books. Books!” (Waldman 8).
Technology is mainly interrupting our attention and making us destructive. Technology is being used by children and adults by a way of web surfing, texting, and social networking. The main role of using technology is it also provides us learning. As this is my freshman year in college, and technology helps me a lot more than anything to go through it. But it might differ to all of us because technology can affect positively and negatively. In my opinion, it can be happening in the way we are using that. Such that in the present time, unluckily it ended up affecting negatively to most of the humans. Most likely, people use the smartphone and the home computer or the laptop as technology. As I said before, there’s no debating that technology has become an integral part of our daily lives, for better or maybe for worse. By looking at the bad side of technology, if we might use it incorrectly by addicting to that way more than we have to use it, it causes massive problems in our lives. Then we may lose the most important thing in our life which is ‘paying attention.’ So, we might miss our loved ones in our lives. We have to control unnecessary addicting to the technology and use it what it needs for. That means without utilizing our time we can learn about everything. Such that there is no doubt that technology can aid in both teaching and learning, and if we used it correctly, the academic experience can be improved remarkably for students of this generation. But if we make that an excuse and try to habitually use our electronics, it makes an addiction. Also, Tolentino stated in “What it takes to put your phone away” article that “increasing demand for our limited attention will keep us from reflecting or thinking deeply” (Tolentino 3). Like that, if we are in our class with the phone next to us, and when suddenly a notification came to our lock screen, it fully distracts us and takes our attention to a whole opposing side. At the time when I’m completing this assignment, I exactly pick up my phone more than ten times in an hour. That is because of the notifications coming from the social media that I’m using, and it lacks my attention as Tolentino stated when we distracted it harmful to our deep thinking and also that is why I always had to rethink about new points to my assignment and it makes me very hard to work in that.
Emotions such as feeling anxious, sad or depressed make it harder for people to pay attention. Also, it is difficult to pay attention when we are tired, sick or not feeling well. But also, it is easy for almost anyone to pay attention to things that are interesting or exciting and it is hard for most people to pay attention to things that are not very interesting or exciting to them. We cannot concentrate or focus our attention equally on the crowd, the action in the field, the comments of the commentators and the comments of the people sitting beside us, all at the same time. At any particular moment, one of these activities will claim our attention. But to go through all tasks in our life we have to pay attention. The tighter we focus, the better our paper.
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It’s hard to pay attention when we are in a noisy world in technology. In ‘What It Takes to Put Your Phone Away’ article Jia Tolentino states about digital minimalism “Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World” (Tolentino 2). In all cases, we should be given our attention to one goal and it may help to success each goal. But if we are in a noisy, distracting environment when we are doing work, there is no benefit to our life or even to anything we are trying to be doing.
People pay more attention to the outside of beauty and pay attention to what is not important. We all have regrets, worries and have bad things we could think about. But if we always think about it and pay attention to the bad thinks our lives it lacks our beauty in life. So, if don’t pay so much attention to the bad and trying to pay more attention to the good, then they don’t bother us anymore when we pay them no mind. When we are training our minds to look at problems every time it makes us sorrowful. We miss the beautiful things in our lives and nature. We have to stop looking for problems and enjoy what we have. That makes life beautiful.
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