Student Life

Just Breathe


Jeff Miller

Breathe in, two, three. Breathe out, two, three.

Feel focused? UW–Madison researchers have found that the simple act of counting breaths can help to improve attention. This is particularly helpful if you’re a heavy multitasker, which, thanks to our constant connectivity, applies to many of us.

According to the study’s lead author, psychology professor C. Shawn Green, our attention inadvertently splits to monitor our various screens and devices. (Ever hear a phantom phone ring? This is why.) Green says that brief mindfulness tasks are effective for media multitaskers because they are “somewhat the opposite of media multitasking.”

So, one more time: breathe in, two, three. Breathe out, two, three.

Published in the Fall 2016 issue


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