As long as I remember, I could not truly focus on something that I considered boring. In school, I would always have issues zoning in and out of the subject. When I would come back home to read a book for homework, I would notice that if I had read a page of that book, I would not remember a single thing. I would always struggle with some subjects and excel at others. This spilled over to my college days where I would read a psychology book and would not remember much either. How I dealt with college is that I would pay attention in class so I would not have to read the book afterwards. This helped me get by psychology and pass the classes. Luckily, this was never a problem with computer science, the professors just did not have book assignments. Everything was practice and assignments. This, in turn, allowed me to, again, excel at the subject.
In a nutshell, I was a “C” grade student except for the subjects I loved. In a nutshell, my studying career just about averaged a C+ (3+ or 78% in other systems). I did not mind it too much in high-school, but in college I was a bit more worried as people would always talk about those GPA averages and their importance to getting a job. These kind of thoughts also did not help with self-esteem. I would always look at my friends and think that they are smarter than me.
Fast-forward to now I think that education should be approached differently. My zoning out is still present today as I try to meditate or listen to instructors. I don’t always find the information boring though. Focus was never something I had mastered through my child/adolescent years. I believe the situation will be worsened by the prevalence of technology in our lives. The problem with technology is that it presents a vast amount of information and forms of distraction. Most corporations are actually battling for your attention right now. If you ever get an opportunity to sit at meeting rooms in companies that deal with users, the biggest subject on their agenda is “time spent on the site”. Our time equals money as it allows to serve more information that directly leads to sales (ads) or acquiring information about me so that it can lead to sales in the future (facebook and google selling it to businesses). Not to go to far on a tangent, but this presents an issue as my children are growing up with even less focus than I had growing up. And I pass on my inability to focus to them as I cannot teach them something I cannot do. It just doesn’t work that way.
I just think on how many times I checked off “Accept terms & conditions” without reading those terms. I imagine it’s very close to a 95%. I reflect of how many times I zoned out while driving. Oh, I am at my house? Oops! This lack of focus had been plaguing me since early childhood. Now I need to go back to my roots, start doing mental exercises – meditate. Now I have to consciously resist the urge to go to Facebook. I have to create mental triggers that would stop me from scrolling down every time I get there. I believe it will get harder as the corporations get smarter. Now I must rethink my choices in life and understand my goals, where I want to go and what I want to do. Then I can remove these time fillers that do not serve me. Better yet, I should stop trying to fill time to avoid boredom, and deep down, be with myself. I must resist the next discount on a new technology gadget. I must learn to focus so I can spend time with my children instead of being on my gadget while they are being on their gadgets. I must re-learn to be at peace with doing nothing. With being a “human being” instead of being a “human doing” and “human going”. For the sake of my children, their children friends and their children’s children. I create the environment around me, I take responsibility for my damage.
As for now, in shadow I walk.