Time To Restore Your Attention

I’m very interested in helping people do things better. I started out in the music business as a songwriter and have had a hand in some hit songs.

What I’ve learned is that music really helps us feel better. Even sad music can help us get through a tough time. Happy music makes a celebration that much sweeter.

Music really does accompany us all through our lives.

I’ve come from a long line of British inventors so when I’m in the recording studio I have my guitar on one side and my computer on the other.

If you know about audio recording then you’ve heard of ProTools. That’s where I do most of my work.

I came to what I call “brain science music” after observing how crowded the world was getting these days.

How do you sit down and do anything without everything pouring in to rob you of your focus?

I had an “aha moment” and I realized that time actually isn’t the most valuable resource we have, it’s our attention spans!  
That became the problem I wanted to solve. Getting our attention spans back and that’s how my business Focus At Will was born.

Focus At Will is a music technology company that sells very specific types of music that improves your brain as you listen to it.

I work with neuroscientists, music artists, and even AI to deliver to our end users a consistent stream of music that fits within our parameters.

Now in North America, the majority of workers are in open office plans. We once thought of them as innovative, but now we’re seeing a big flaw in this kind of design.  
The first thing a typical worker does now before sitting down is to reach for their headphones. Here’s where we come in!

All the music you listen to whether it’s from Pandora, Spotify, or Apple Music, is designed to engage you.

To have you pay attention to it.

So when you pop headphones on your ears you’re blocking out any noise around you, but you’re also turning your attention to the sounds now playing in your ears.

You may not realize this, but it’s having a big effect on your brainwaves.

We set up an experiment with three groups, one with music with lyrics, one without any music, and another with one of our specialized brainwave music tracks and we measured levels of focus and engagement.  
We found that the highest numbers came from listening to our tracks.

When it comes to staying focused, listening to music you’re partial to, isn’t the best option.

Our brains are hardwired to pay attention to other human beings.

Our limbic system, in particular, is active in this process and it’s there to help keep us alive from prehistoric times.

That’s all part of why listening to tracks with vocals is biologically distracting and now we have the data to prove it.

Even instruments that sound similar to vocals are found to be distracting so I recommend cutting those out during your work sessions.

I obviously, recommend listening to our brainwave music tracks, but if you’re not convinced just try some instrumental music and see how it changes your work sessions.


Action Steps

  1. Cut down distractions in your work environment, reduce glares, and outside noise.
  2. If you listen to music, pick a track without vocals or instruments that are similar to vocals, like a trumpet.
  3. Try a specialized brainwave enhancing track from Focus At Will and see how it works for you.


Result You Will Achieve

A more focused mind and increased flow states during work sessions.

Mentor: Will Henshall

Founder at Focus At Will Labs. He has had notable success as a creative, tech inventor and entrepreneur in three different fields. Will has written songs and performed on many platinum hit records; has 5 patents for audio collaboration recording studio technology and created the ProTools “Digidelivery” pro audio tool; and started up 5 startups in the past 30 years.

This article is based on an EHQ interview with the mentor.