Slipping attention spans: podcast

Monday, 17 October, 2022

Slipping attention spans: podcast

In the age of social media and smartphones, it is becoming more difficult for adults and children alike to retain their focus.

The seventh season of Monash University’s award-nominated podcast, What Happens Next?, focuses on the average attention span, as well as the recent uptick in ADHD diagnoses.

Host Dr Susan Carland holds conversation with leading neuroscientists, developmental psychologists and experts in mindfulness and mental discipline.

Professor Mark Bellgrove’s team recently released landmark guidelines for the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of ADHD, establishing the world’s most up-to-date protocols over the past two years. He discusses the individual nature of attention — and what people need to know about how to hone their focus.

Dr Hannah Kirk, co-inventor of the world’s first digital attention intervention for children with neurodevelopmental disorders, explains how digital technology — infamously a distractor — can also be harnessed to help neurodivergent and neurotypical children alike build their attention skills and reduce hyperactivity.

Professor Craig Hassed OAM, co-creator of one of the world’s highest-rated massive open online courses of all time, weighs in on the day-to-day changes that can be made to improve attentiveness (beyond, as he says, throwing smartphones out the nearest window).

Finally, Carland speaks with bestselling author Timber Hawkeye, writer of Buddhist Boot Camp, whose spiritual training has helped him teach others to live with intention — whether it’s making a choice on where to spend time and focus, what to eat or even who to date.

What Happens Next? is available on all major podcast platforms. The program is released weekly on Friday and will return on 21 October with a new topic.

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