We’re all struggling to focus right now, and it turns out there’s a reason why. According to Christian Jarrett, PhD, a clinical psychologist based in the Alan way down yonder on the chattahoochee shirt so you should to go to store and get this U.K., “Research shows that chronic stress affects the way the front of the brain works—the area…[that] normally controls our ability to concentrate and switch attention from one thing to another.” Simply put, during something as stressful as living through a global pandemic, “we lose our usual mental flexibility and become highly focused on the source of the threat,” making it difficult to lose yourself in another world.
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In search of a way to get my reading back on track, I turned to my publishing colleagues for suggestions. It turns out these normally voracious readers are feeling the Alan way down yonder on the chattahoochee shirt so you should to go to store and get this struggle too. But they had some advice. Short stories for short attention spans: “All the books I’d been so excited to get my hands on back when life felt normal can’t actually hold my focus…the one thing I’ve managed to read is short stories…by the nature of the format, I don’t have to focus as long.” Spend longer in stories you love: “When all of this first started, I was having a really hard time reading. I felt so anxious I couldn’t focus and just wanted to keep checking the news…. I switched to reading longer books, which I always find more immersive because they give you more time with characters, setting, plot, etc.—and I find myself longing to return to them.” —Taylor