Tag: work from home

Sounds can improve health and concentration.

For people with sensory and attention issues, focusing on tasks is a major problem. We are frequently sidetracked by intrusive thoughts and “shiny” objects as our brain desperately seeks out stimulation. It’s not laziness or as simple as being easily distracted, our bodies do not reward our brains for getting things done like other people do. Most peoples focus is based on what is important, our brains focus based on how interesting something is.

One thing that can help is providing supplemental stimulation. Something that can fill in the stimulation gap between what we are doing and what our brains need. Here are some tools that I have found success with, and I think will help others.

Background music. 

I find that music that doesn’t have lyrics works best. The genre is up to personal preference. For me Electronica, Instrumental Metal, and Lo-Fi House music works great. Others may prefer Classical or Jazz. For me, that doesn’t provide enough stimulation, but everyone’s brain is different, so find something that works for you.

Nature sounds/White Noise.

    There are lots of options out there, but one I particularly like is https://mynoise.net/. It provides highly customizable soundscapes, and you can even save them once you get them just the way you want. You can also load soundscapes that others have made. They have apps for Android and iOS, so you can take your happy place anywhere! Studies have shown that nature sounds can even improve health outcomes, so there are benefits beyond additional focus. Others, like Calm.com, also provide mindfulness features. I was sceptical of mindfulness for a long time, but I have found it highly beneficial over the last few years.

Hopefully this helps you live a more peaceful and successful life! Please let us know if any of these tips helps you, I love to hear that something I suggested has helped someone. If you have your own tools that help you focus, please let me know. I like to try new things, and am happy to share tools that help people succeed!

Setting up to learn from home.

With many schools switching to remote teaching, parents are trying to figure out how to give their children the best chance to succeed. Here are some tips that will help.

Set aside a dedicated space. Having a physical space that is dedicated to schoolwork will help get children, and parents, differentiate between doing schoolwork, and just being at home. Try and set aside a corner of a room for a small desk or table, and keep all the necessary supplies close by. It is extremely difficult to remain focused on a task when you have to make trips around the house to get needed supplies, and stepping away from the desk will introduce lots of opportunities to get distracted. If you don’t have space for another desk, try setting up temporary dividers on the family dining table. You can create separate dividers for different subjects, with frequently needed information applied on each one.

Here is an example of one set up, and places to buy them: https://bit.ly/2ErusB2 https://bit.ly/2ErDlKT https://amzn.to/31pae46

Here is a video for an idea of how to set up the dividers. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TxyusiXuQdQ&

If you need a place to store the supplies, we use a mobile cart of drawers like this. https://amzn.to/2QkfUG0

Get a good internet connection. If at all possible, connect the school computer directly to your router with a network cable. It will provide a faster and more stable connection than wireless does. This is especially important for video chats. While not strictly necessary, it will make the whole experience much smoother.

Protect your kids online. To monitor and control computer usage, create an individual Microsoft Account on the computer for your child. https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4026923/windows-10-create-a-local-user-or-administrator-account Once that’s done, Windows 10 has some very powerful and effective controls built in. They allow parents to block websites and web content, track usage, set time limits, share calendars, and more. https://account.microsoft.com/family/about

Find a good chair. Ergonomics are just as important for kids as they are for adults, posture problems now can become big health problems in the future. Physical discomfort and fatigue also make it harder to concentrate. Here is an article reviewing childrens chairs to give you an idea of what to look for. https://www.imore.com/best-desk-chair-kids Remember, there is high demand right now, so finding something in stock may be difficult. When you find a deal, jump on it. Also, add a small step stool for your kids to set their feet on. Feet dangling off the chair is not only uncomfortable, it can cause dangerous blood clots even in children.

Take care of yourself. All these tips apply for those of us working from home also. We are going to be working or going to school from home for the foreseeable future, so let’s try and reduce little annoyances. They add up, and over time make the whole experience stressful and exhausting.

Finally, BE PATIENT. This is a new routine and experience for everyone, and change is always difficult. It’s ok if it’s hard and things don’t go smoothly at first. Learn the lessons that come along, be adaptable, and keep moving forward. Definitely don’t be afraid to ask for help!
We are all in this together.