The Joy of Diffuse Attention

I was out in the garden today weeding, and I found myself immersed in the pleasure of all the different sounds and sensations I was exposed to, all at the same time. It was such a novelty as in the past, prior to doing Open Focus training, my attention was centred on one thing at a time, and everything else was considered a ‘distraction’.

Dr Kopec’s method of teaching how to diffuse our attention has been so helpful for me. I can translate what I’ve learnt from his guided exercises (where I learnt to diffuse my attention first to both hands, and then to opposite walls in a room) into everyday life. I can expand my awareness out from where I am as the central point, to all the sensations I’m aware of and all the sounds in the environment. That means I get to enjoy the sound of the river on our property, the bees buzzing in the tree above me, the birds singing all around, my feet and hands in contact with the earth. Even the sound of the neighbour’s dog barking, which in the past would have been a very annoying distraction, now simply becomes part of the cornucopia of sound waves that I diffuse my attention across.

You might wonder why this is all such a novelty to me, and the answer is that I’m in recovery from post-traumatic stress (PTSD), which has hampered my ability to enjoy the simple things in life the last few years. This morning I woke up in pain after a nightmare. Prior to learning Open Focus that probably would have meant I didn’t even make it out into the garden because I would have been in pain all day. Now I can dissolve the pain within minutes of getting out of bed and go on with the rest of my day. And because of regularly doing the Open Focus exercises, I have so much less tension in my muscles that every activity I do is easier.

I am very thankful to Drs Fehmi and Kopec for all the change I’ve seen in my life after just a couple of months of Open Focus exercises.