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Step 3: Clear Thinking
Developing powers of concentration.
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Mastery of good concentration habits is the next step.
Re-education in receptive thought permits better use of the five senses.  Once this is accomplished, Concentration exercises establish a good groundwork for healthier emissive thought practices, or “thinking things through” in an orderly, energetic and efficient manner.

Dr. Vittoz said, « Concentration is the ability to fix one’s thoughts on a given point or idea and follow through on its development without becoming distracted.”  Folks with good concentration skills  can intentionally devote themselves to the task at hand in a focused manner. 

It’s difficult to concentrate on a project when your thoughts wander.  Vittoz called this “vagabonding.”  “Vagabonding” allows the mind to continually skip from one image, one idea, or one interest, to another.  When wandering thoughts are habitual, monumental effort is necessary to try to concentrate on one idea for any length of time.

There are three kinds of concentration exercises:

  1. Sensory concentration directed to certain parts of the body,  fixing attention there without being distracted, for instance a concentration exercise designed to zero in  on one’s breathing.  (Concentrating on breathing often opens the door to relaxation.  The Vittoz method proposes breathing exercises tailored to the needs and desires of the person.) 

    Or, one might learn a concentration exercise focusing on the feet, one at a time.  (An added bonus:  if poor circulation is an issue, concentration exercises will improve circulation, and warm the feet.)

  2. Concentration on simple drawings and forms. 
    Concentration on drawing certain simple but precise figures, like circles, squares, or triangles followed by concentration on these figures as mental images is an efficient way to improve the ability to concentrate. Other forms and figures, drawn carefully with a pencil or pen, and then retraced in the imagination, are also effective, such as the mathematical sign of “Infinity,” or spirals drawn toward a center point or toward an outside point, or the vertical line of the number “1” are used as concentration exercises.  Over and above the capacity to concentrate which develops through these exercises, their cross-cultural and supra-cultural symbolism constitutes universal human connections concerning how we function.  These exercises sometimes give insight into an individual’s potential for personal growth.

  3. Concentration on certain frames of mind.
    For Dr. Vittoz, concentration on a frame of mind was only useful if it was considered in its entirety; that is, evaluated as it was felt in the body as well as mentally and emotionally, in reference to the body, mind and spirit.

    In these exercises where one concentrates on certain state of being, one is asked to recall, for example, a prior experience of peacefulness until able to relive or replay it in ones body.  A sensation of the calm of that moment will return. 

    Concentration on memories of a moment of great energy will produce a sensation of greater energy.  These types of exercises permit you to benefit from the calm or the energy of that moment, again and again.  The client can call forth, again and again, at will, a frame of mine, and use its energy, again and again.
 
   
 
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