How can I contribute to my attention span during online meetings?




Nowadays, it is difficult for people to keep their attention during virtual meetings, considering that they are not sharing the same physical space with other coworkers. Letting your attention slip

Nowadays, it is difficult for people to keep their attention during virtual meetings, considering that they are not sharing the same physical space with other coworkers. Letting your attention slip can mean missing out on important information and losing interest (Hale & Grenny, 2020).

To help you tackle this challenge head-on and boost your attention span during virtual meetings, here are some handy tips to keep in mind:

1. Minimize distractions

The first step to sharpen your focus during online meetings is creating a distraction-free zone. Seek out a quiet spot where interruptions are unlikely, and make sure to clear away any visual or auditory distractions that might steal your attention from the meeting agenda (Mills, 2023).

2. Set clear goals

Establishing clear goals and objectives for every online meeting can help you to stay on point. You might want to take a moment before the meeting kicks off to map out what you want to accomplish and organize your tasks accordingly. Having a solid game plan in place would keep you focused and less likely to veer off course with unrelated discussions (Rathore, 2022).

3. Take short breaks

Don’t forget to give your brain a breather during those online meetings! Schedule short breaks to refresh your mind and fend off mental fatigue (Qi et al., 2020). You can take a moment to rest your eyes, stretch your body, or take a few calming breaths to reset your focus. These quick pauses can be the key to keeping your concentration sharp and staying fully engaged throughout the meeting.

4. Listen actively

Active listening is key to maintaining focus during virtual meetings. Engage within the discussion by listening attentively to what others are saying and asking questions when necessary (Qi et al., 2020). This demonstrates your involvement and may help you stay focused on the topic at hand.

5. Reduce multitasking

While it may be tempting to multitask during online meetings, such as checking emails or browsing the web, doing so can change your attention span. Instead, focus on the meeting agenda and avoid distractions that may pull your focus away from the discussion.

6. Practice mindfulness

Incorporating mindfulness techniques into your daily routine can help reduce distractions and boost your ability to stay present during online meetings. Simple practices such as steady breathing, meditation, or visualization can help calm the mind and increase concentration (George Washington University, 2020).

7. Stay engaged

Lastly, staying engaged and actively participating in the meeting can help maintain your interest and motivation. Contribute ideas, ask questions, and share your insights to keep the discussion dynamic and engaging for everyone involved.

It is time to have an excellent concentration!

As you work towards sharpening your focus in online meetings, keep in mind that alternatives are here to back you up on your journey towards good attention and productivity. 


Qi, P., Gao, L., Meng, J., Thakor, N., Bezerianos, A., & Sun, Y. (2020). Effects of Rest-Break on Mental Fatigue Recovery Determined by a Novel Temporal Brain Network Analysis of Dynamic Functional Connectivity. IEEE transactions on neural systems and rehabilitation engineering: a publication of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, 28(1), 62–71.

Hale, J., & Grenny, J. (2020, March 9). How to Get People to Actually Participate in Virtual Meetings. Harvard Business Review. 

Mills, K. (2023, February). Speaking of psychology: Why our attention spans are shrinking, with Gloria Mark, PhD. American Psychological Association. 

Rathore, S. (2022, July 5). How to Lead Better Virtual Meetings. Harvard Business Review. 

Gershman, S. (2020, May 4). Stop Zoning Out in Zoom Meetings. Harvard Business Review. 

George Washington University. (2020, April 21). How to Increase Attention Span: Exercises, Tips & Resources.