An Exercise to Improve Concentration

Concentration and focus is like a skill and can be exercised to be improved.

While running, I like to perform a particular concentration drill that I’ve developed. Every step is a count of 1 until 1 reach 16, then I start over. But that’s not all. I maintain a rhythm of breathing out every 4 counts, that is, on 4, 8, 12, and 16. If I’m really winded, I’ll breathe out every two counts: 2, 4, 6, etc.

But that’s not all. I found that my mind could still wander while running, counting and breathing. So I developed a task which can occupy my conscious thought completely. I visualize a set of 4×4 squares for each count, as shown below.





I find that this exercise helps keep me calm and reduces my propensity towards distraction.

If you want an advance…

If you want to work for me and want an $800 advance and I’ve never met you in person, make sure you have at least one reference. I’m not just going to give a random person on the Internet $800 because he says he can do some work.

Go straight to the CEO for customer service

Ever been in a situation where you found customer service to be hopeless? You’re dissatisfied with the way a company has treated you? Try appealing directly to the head of the company.

Now, typically top level executives like CEO’s don’t answer their own phone calls (Though I did get through on a phone call to the head of marketing for a large corporation once. A story for another day.) E-mail is mostly bad too.

So what’s the best way to reach the CEO? Write a politely worded complaint letter describing your problem and expected solution in a neutral tone. Don’t whine, exaggerate, or insult. Get Mr. Spock to proofread it for you if you have to.

Then comes the magic step: send the letter FedEx overnight express addressed to the CEO. Yes, it’s more expensive than a phone call, fax, or e-mail, but that’s part of why it works. Think about it: if you were an underling in charge of handling the CEO’s correspondence, would you dare stop a a blue and orange FedEx envelope from reaching your boss’s hands? If someone makes the effort to send FedEx express, it must be important!