How to focus in a world of distractions

How can creatives manage their ‘whizzy’ brains, and is our pursuit of concentration doomed to fail? Illustrator and writer Ben Tallon discusses how to avoid the demons of procrastination, and still find time to let the brain percolate

For many of us, focus is hard to find. If only I could have a whole hour with no distractions, we think to ourselves, then I could really get stuff done. If only I wouldn’t keep tabbing between Twitter, and my email, and my other email, and picking up my phone, and looking at the news, and doing pretty much anything other than what I should be doing. All the while, we imagine what we might achieve if we finally reached this mythical state of pure concentration.

There’s no doubt that modern life is hugely distracting. It’s not just all the technology and screens and streams, it’s the pressure to balance so many different elements. And for creatives, there’s the added challenge of juggling many different jobs at once, and the time pressure that comes with that.

Top image: Four and Up – drawn to represent the “storm of self loathing” created by Mario Kart defeat; Above: Chicken Shop Boys. All images: Ben Tallon