A Balanced Approach to Wellness

Archive for the ‘Attention deficit’ Category

Attention deficit: a reason to medicate or a natural way of being

Children playing outside on a sunny day

People’s inability to focus has been the basis of entire industries for the last forty to fifty years. It has skyrocketing potential for so many businesses that its existence feeds economic trends. Attention deficiencies bolster the production of ingested aids (medicines, vitamins, etc.), behavioral aids, and lifestyle products. There are therapists to diagnose and therapists to advise, therapists to teach the parents and therapists to teach the children. So much activity around an invented affliction!

Inability to focus has causes. Sometimes there are birth defects that lead to attention deficiencies, but these causes are not the reasons for the new enormous industries. The new industries created the new disorders without facing the causes.

There are four main causes of inability to focus in the modern world:

  1. Industrialization, which brought with it urbanization and specialization
  2. Personal communication devices: radios, TVs, stereo systems, telephones, etc.
  3. Distancing from nature and from nature’s splendors and rhythms
  4. Standard learning methodologies in schools, universities, and courses that are not appropriate for most of those studying (approximately 60%)

Of all these causes, distancing from nature is the most serious. People require exposure to nature’s creatures (domesticated animals, untamed animals, fish, and insects), nature’s landscapes, edible foods in nature, flowers, plants, trees, and seasonal changes. These elements teach and develop attention capabilities. Without these connections to nature—or with only limited exposure to them—the ability to concentrate for extended periods of time is lessened and unappreciated, the ability to focus is shortened, and the ability to be resourceful is lessened. Not for everyone, but for most.

Industrialization led (1) to people moving into housing that cuts them off from nature and (2) to work that is specialized. Modern society’s focus on specialization has led to repetitive labor, day after day, year after year, be it in a field, at a desk, or by a computer. Specialization appears to advance societal goals, but in actuality, it limits people, which in turn, constrains society. Repetitive labor lessens the life of the laborer/person—not necessarily in terms of length of lifespan, but more in terms of a reduced existence. Specialization affects ability to focus by requiring unnatural attention to a limited area. Some people naturally feel at ease focusing on a limited area, but most don’t.

Personal communication devices pull people away from self-created enjoyments. Creating one’s own enjoyment requires focus and self-awareness. When someone else creates the enjoyment, focus is reduced. Earlier personal communication devices, like radios, caused people to reevaluate their own skills at entertainment and to sometimes quit. Stereo systems contributed to the move away from self-entertainment and attempts to create music. Television brought visual entertainment into the home, which led to a lessening in public gatherings and continued reevaluation of personal skills and desire to create entertainment. Telephones enable people to gather even less. Personal computers and phones continue the move from gathering together and have changed many aspects of self-entertainment, which then leads to increased inability to focus.

All people learn differently. Some learn through experiential training, some learn visually, some learn by hearing other people’s stories, and some learn only the things that really interest them. The standardized methodologies for teaching in a classroom assist no more than 40% of the students. The other 60%–the majority—require learning that is different. These people are stigmatized as problem learners when they actually have normal learning capabilities.

These four causes of inability to focus are interwoven into the fabric of modern society. Schools teach the minority of students well and fall short with the majority. Attachment to personal communication devices lessens patience and attention. Specialization narrows focus and awareness of things beyond one’s specialty. Detachment from nature removes opportunities for focus enhancement.

The attention deficiencies industries overlook the four causes and look at normal human traits as negative characteristics to be changed. They ignore the fact that modern living requires focus on activities that can be dull, rote, repetitive, and constraining. They trivialize the natural needs to move and change focus. They ignore the importance of connection to nature.

Modern schools, work places, institutions, and organizations require participation in dull, rote, repetitive, and constraining tasks and situations. People were designed for tasks and situations that are ever-changing. Tasks that demand constant focus and lengthy concentration tax the natural nature of humans. Distractions, tempest, whirl, and hurly-burly—those are the situations that people respond to.

Sitting in a classroom with a teacher droning on—NO! Sitting at a computer with few breaks—NO! Sitting on a factory line repeating the same motion over and over and over and over—NO! Hours of religious expression with expected intention—NO! People were not designed for these situations. To expect them to handle these situations and not fidget or daydream or disturb would require a new design.

People are designed for doing some of this, doing some of that, moving here, then moving there, short bouts of focus, studied execution of required tasks and chosen pursuits—and then sleep to recharge, repair, and function. People cannot hear and digest information delivered perfunctorily nor handle verbal assault nor accept displays of unimaginative and unmeant praise nor decipher dull and sterilized writing nor participate in uninspired presentations nor stay still for too long nor perform religious requirements without proper guidance and inspiration. Doing these things results in attention distraction, anger or enhanced criticism, dulled emotions and responses, and opposition to more than the cause of the opposition.

As mentioned earlier, the influences of nature were once major influences on people. Some people and cultures run their lives around the cycles of nature, but the number of people who are nature-centric lessens with developments in technology. The connection to flora and fauna significantly 1) broadens and heightens understanding of cycles and fluctuations; 2) develops appreciative and inquisitive capabilities; and 3) causes people to examine and work with vegetation that aid human life and animals that enhance human existence. When people allowed fluctuations of time, season, and life to govern their lives, they developed more attentive skills.

The creation of societies that reward unnatural behaviors and occupations and punish normal human behavior punish themselves. People force and repress and mold themselves to function within the constraints of modern societies. They think they are superior when they manage to overcome their natural inclinations for movement and physical expression. People do manage to adjust to their polygonal existences, but their bodies and spirits bear the brunt of the altered requirements.(A polygonal existence is a life that feels twisted and unnatural, a life that is unbalanced and incorrectly focused.)

Attention to the world around, to other people’s actions and antics, to creatures other than humans, to plant life, and to other-worldly possibilities can sharpen attention capabilities. Attention capabilities are dulled through focus on petty inconveniences, petty pursuits, mindless entertainment, mindless lecturing,  futile escapes, futile reasoning to justify lack of initiative, words spoken without thought, words spoken in a tone of condescension or disgust, distractive substances that steal focus,  and distractive and negative thoughts that are untrue or unnecessary. When attention capabilities are challenged, habits, influences, and routines should be examined.

Assuming that a person has a deficit because he or she cannot stay still or cannot focus on a dull and uninspiring topic reflects badly on society. There are people born with deficits or who acquire deficits through accident or illness, but perceived deficits of people who are unable to force themselves to live within uncompromising regulations are not deficits—they are expressions of frustration or unreleased energy or laziness or despair.

The rush of the attention deficiencies industries to pronounce people as needing ingested aids, behavioral aids, and lifestyle products in order to function is foolhardy and destructive. Some of ingested aids damage internal functioning of the body. All of the aids lessen society’s view of the people who are treated as attention deficient—including the people themselves.

What changes are needed to lessen attention deficiencies, besides changing society?

  • Spending more time around plants, trees, and flowers.
  • Spending more time with animals at home, at zoos, at bird observation sites, in nature.
  • Reading more for pleasure.
  • Spending more time outside feeling the weather.
  • Regularly using the body physically through exercise or activities that incorporate movement.
  • Participating in creating music and musical performances.
  • Spending more time with family or friends doing volunteer work.
  • Studying topics that are interesting.
  • Creating meals from scratch.
  • Developing hobbies that involve concentration and gradual improvement.
  • Using personal communication devices less.

Instead of focusing on attention deficiencies, the attention deficiencies industries could focus on attention capabilities. To do so, attention capability needs to be understood. There are six aspects of attention capability:

  • The ability to take in outside stimuli and think about them in orderly and sequential thought processes, and use the subsequent and processed information to formulate ideas, images and sensory input, questions, impressions and intuitive evaluations (for positive and negative stimuli), and information for storage.
  • The ability to identify information, opinions, memories, and guidelines that are stored or remembered, and to apply them to incoming stimuli.
  • The ability to filter out unnecessary, trivial, and malicious information from all incoming and internalized information.
  • The ability to evaluate outside stimuli and determine the need for using them. For example, when noticing a person walk by—First, evaluating the person in relation to oneself: identifying the person as familiar (family, friend, or acquaintance) or known but unacquainted (friend of a friend, famous, work personnel, etc.) or unknown but interesting (appealing physically or not, engaged in eye-catching activity, wearing eye-catching apparel, etc.) or unknown and suspicious or simply unknown. Second, determining an appropriate response if required, initiating an action or not, taking note of the person or something about the person or letting the person pass by without an intake of information.
  • The ability to focus on outside stimuli that must be internalized.
  • The ability to use the senses to connect with environmental (not man-made) activity, changes, and patterns.

The attention capabilities industries could focus on these aspects of attention to elevate people rather than looking for deficiencies that aren’t existent. There is much that can be done to elevate people. The first step is to abandon the invented affliction of attention deficiencies.

Note: This information is from the first draft of the upcoming book Invented Afflictions and Muscular Conditions. This information has been spiritually received. Some of the information has been published here in earlier blog posts.

School is starting, time to sit still–or is it?

Post 80-Attention

School is starting again and many families will be urged, or will insist on, using drugs to help their children sit still in class. The problem is not the children; the problem is the framework.  People have different ways of learning and different interests, and school curricula, in general, ignore these facts. Here is a blog post from last year that discusses the problems with forcing people to sit still.

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From “Attention deficits are societal deficits” dated Feb. 4, 2014:

So many interventions are being forced on people these days for attention deficit issues. Symptoms are being treated, but not the causes. The next few posts on my blog will deal with the causes of attention deficit. If you find this outlook interesting, please forward the posts to other like-minded people.

We’ll start with a quote from Oneself—Living:

“Modern living requires focus on activities that can be dull, rote, repetitive, and constraining. Modern schools, work places, institutions, and organizations require participation in dull, rote, repetitive, and constraining tasks and situations. People were designed for tasks and situations that are ever-changing. Tasks that demand constant focus and lengthy concentration tax the natural nature of humans. Distractions, tempest, whirl, and hurly-burly—those are the situations people respond to…

People—are—designed—for—doing some of this, doing some of that, moving here, then moving there, short bouts of focus, studied execution of required tasks and chosen pursuits—and then sleep to recharge, repair, and function. People cannot hear and digest information delivered perfunctorily nor handle verbal assault nor accept displays of unimaginative and unmeant praise nor decipher dull and sterilized writing nor participate in uninspired presentations nor stay still for too long nor perform religious requirements without proper guidance and inspiration. Doing these things result in attention distraction, anger or enhanced criticism, dulled emotions and responses, and opposition against more than the cause of the opposition…

The creation of societies that reward unnatural behaviors and occupations and punish normal human behavior punish themselves. People force and repress and mold themselves to function within the constraints of the modern societies. They think they are superior when they manage to overcome their natural inclinations for movement and physical expression. People do manage to adjust to their polygonal existences, but their bodies and spirits bear the brunt of the altered requirements…

Assuming that a person has a deficit because he or she cannot stay still or cannot focus on a dull and uninspiring topic reflects badly on society. There are people born with deficits or who acquire deficits through accident or illness, but perceived deficits of people who are unable to force themselves to live within uncompromising regulations are not deficits—they are expressions of frustration or unreleased energy or laziness or despair.”

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Medicating is not the answer!

 

Serving distraction, athletic shoe style

Distracting colors

See those colors and patterns above? They are the colors and patterns on popular sport shoes for boys. Colorful! Bold! Eye catching!

Yes, eye-catching. A boy who is struggling to stay attentive in class will be easily distracted by his colorful, bold, and eye-catching footwear. For one moment, he’ll be listening to his teacher and then his eyes will lower, he’ll see his shoes, and then his mind is off—not necessarily off thinking about a game he’ll be playing, just off away from where his mind needs to be.

If you have a son (or grandson) who is easily distracted, consider this information before you buy the latest fad in footwear.  There are so many distractions anyway. No need to serve another form of distraction.

Overcoming the attention deficit mindset

Post 86--Overcomng A-DPeople who have been categorized as ADD or ADHD or sort of ADD or ADHD or on the verge of ADD or ADHD or growing into ADD or ADHD are in need of balancing:

  • Balancing of physical needs: proper food and water intake, proper sleep, sufficient movement each day, and relaxation of the eyes
  • Balancing of emotional needs
  • Balancing of intellectual needs
  • Balancing of caregivers’ needs

Handling attention deficit designations can cause much work on the part of caregivers (parents and guardians). Caregivers must be aware that their actions towards the A-D designee influence the A-D exhibition. The more balanced the A-D designee, the less symptoms exhibited.

Ways to balance A-D-afflicted people

  • Drink a glass of water upon rising each morning.
  • Eat a proper breakfast before school or work (most breakfast cereals, chocolate milk, and quick snacky foods do not count as proper breakfast foods).
  • Plan movement into every day: walking, dancing, biking, swimming, running, jumping, skipping, etc.
  • Take frequent breaks from TV watching, from lengthy computer and mobile device work and play, and from prolonged viewing of oneself in mirrors.
  • Take part in activities that better other people, the environment, and animals.
  • Take part in housecleaning, home plant care, outdoor home care, etc. Each person should share in these tasks.
  • Observe nature every day, even if there is only a single plant near one’s home. The more nature is observed, the more developed a person’s observation and focus skills.
  • Challenge oneself through reading, puzzles, riddles, learning to play a musical instrument, learning to enjoy something that originally appeared to be boring.

Overcoming the stigma of being A-D afflicted

People who have been classified or sort-of classified as ADD or ADHD should not lower their expectations of themselves. They should see themselves as normal people who need to attend to their body’s conversation. If the body is signaling that it has been sitting too long, it probably has—time to move. They should aim for living in balance and in harmony with their environment.

Changes for all

Everyone who lives in the hustle-bustle of today’s society needs to add more moments of nature into their lives. More deep breathing, more sleep. Better awareness of food intake (less processed stuff) and of physical activity. More focus on building connections with other people and with the society.

Please share this information with people who question the status quo of dealing with attention deficit issues.

One more factor in attention deficit creation

Post 85-one more factor

Babies who are born healthy have the ability to observe and learn as they grow. Once they are socialized, their abilities to observe and learn have been set. Not set in stone, set in motion. The type of motion is the determining factor in learning inability. If the motion is too indulgent, pressured or inconsistent, then negative opinions of self and one’s abilities to focus and absorb are formed. If the motion is accepting, engendering of feelings of responsibility and consistent, then abilities are appreciated and worked. In either case, the ability to learn is there, but the perception of it is altered—positively or negatively.

Of the negative forces, indulgence has become a determining manipulator of people’s ability to work diligently, attempt new tasks and manage disagreeable ones, practice, and maintain a supportive attitude. Indulgence does not require wealth; it requires a caregiver who does not accept that sadness, difficulty, and frustration are normal parts of development. Indulgence leads to requiring immediate gratification and/or feelings of lack. When “attention deficit” is suspected, indulgence must be examined. It is reversible!

Of the positive forces, engendering feelings of responsibility is very important. Children must feel that their contributions are needed. Each small task that a child does in his or her home builds confidence and focus. People want to feel necessary and challenged—these are design features!

More to come…Please share this information with people who question the status quo of dealing with attention deficit issues.

External and internal pressures that affect attention maintenance

Post 84-pressures

Attention deficits occur when attention is unfocused, unavailable, and uninterested. Unfocused: too many distractions, too many choices. Unavailable: inadequate nourishment, hydration, sleep, movement, confidence. Uninterested: the subject of focus is irrelevant or too difficult or presented inadequately.

Maintaining attention when distracted, unable to decide, inadequately nourished, lacking in water, sleep deprived, needing to move, low in confident-ness (not knowing one’s gifts), the material or task is not clearly needed, the material or task seems overwhelming, or the material or task requires additional explanation—all these pressures tax the body’s ability to handle concentration.

Above all, expecting to succeed without working at goals, without applying oneself, without failing is expectation folly. Each person has certain gifts (many, many more than they usually think), but not enough to have success at all endeavors. Living in today’s world requires investing time and effort into learning many things that aren’t interesting and aren’t easily internalized. Success comes from diligence, repeated attempts, practice, and attitude that is accepting and uplifting.

More to come…Please share this information with people who question the status quo of dealing with attention deficit issues.

Refuse to be labeled!

Post 83-Refuse labels

Refuse to be labeled!

Refuse to be called deficient!

Refuse to accept mediocrity in yourself!

Refuse to let others think of you as deficient or different!

Refuse to be less than you really are!

These instructions are for people who have been labeled with ADD or ADHD. The labeling applies to very few people, and even then, the labeling is inaccurate. The overuse of these labels is destructive. For people and for society. An epidemic is occurring in which perfectly normal people are turning into people with deficiencies, and who then must be treated. Perfectly normal includes people who have trouble sitting still. Perfectly normal includes people who must take breaks when doing prolonged activities that bore them. Perfectly normal includes people whose conversations jump from topic to topic-tangential conversations are normal. This list of perfectly normal can go on and on. Perfectly normal covers most “imperfections” in people.

Problems caused by genetic or birth defects (such as defects that result from alcohol or drug use by pregnant women), accidents, diseases, and such are different. The resulting people are different and require special attention—usually more exposure to nature and kindness.

Everyone struggles with something. That is the nature of existing.

More to come…Please share this information with people who question the status quo of dealing with attention deficit issues.

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