[ISTP] Attention Span

Attention Span

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This is a discussion on Attention Span within the ISTP Forum - The Mechanics forums, part of the SP's Temperament Forum- The Creators category; My brother is a 12 year old ISTP, with a very short attention span. He is taking a very important ...

  1. #1
    ISTJ - The Duty Fulfillers

    Attention Span

    My brother is a 12 year old ISTP, with a very short attention span.

    He is taking a very important national exam at the end of the year and he is very capable of doing well (he's the intelligent but lazy type), but he just CANNOT focus on one thing for more than 15 minutes. One minute he does his work, the next minute he is off playing with a pen or ANYTHING else that is nearby him
    My aunt thinks he has some attention problem but I think he just needs to be more determined in helping himself get over this problem. I don't think my parents would want to give him any presciption pills for ADHD so he has to solve this problem by himself, without medication.

    Are there any ISTPs who have/had this problem too? How do you help yourself to stay focused during your study time? What motivates you to work hard to achieve your goals?



  2. #2
    ISTP - The Mechanics

    What's this, study time? Goals? Methinks these are foreign concepts.

    To be honest, I never had this problem. I had and have excellent powers of concentration. And what I know of other ISTPs, that when they are doing something they are interested in, they can work at for hours on end. I can. But I have no patience for things that don't interest me. When I was in school, I wouldn't turn in important assignments, because I couldn't be bothered. This is just speculation here, but when it comes to things that don't spark interest in ISTPs, "attention span" is non-existent. We don't waste our breath giving them our attention.

    How I dealt with this is just to become more disciplined and more aware of the importance of school. If he's 12, I'm not sure how much value he'd place into school or exams.

    What is he interested in? Does he have problems with concentration in those areas?
    rousse and BrooklynBoy thanked this post.

  3. #3
    ISTJ - The Duty Fulfillers

    He has interests in sports, and toys that require building or putting together such as Bionicles. I think you could be right about him being undisciplined. He does 'work' on videogames and toys for hours but not his school work. When I ask him what his problem is he says he is lazy and unable to focus on his school work. Which shows he is uninterested and not bothered.
    So how did you deal with your problem in school? Did you become more disciplined as time passed? Or was it because you had something like an important exam coming up?

  4. #4
    INFJ - The Protectors

    I can relate to this ... when I got home just wanted to play sport/go to the gym/play video/computer games/watch TV/surf the net etc.

    I worked reasonably hard in class, because social interaction wasn't really my forte (inferior Fe) - so that helped me out in that I didn't need to do as much study as others when I got home.

    I also find I by far get the most efficient study done when I go to the library (quiet isolated spot, no external distractions) - although I do find it hard to consistently conjure up the motivation to do it.
    browneyes94 and BrooklynBoy thanked this post.

  5. #5
    ESTP - The Doers

    I have been told my various people I have the attention span of a butterfly, however if I am doing something I know cannot be avoided, or enjoying it immensely, I can focus, and believe me its noticeable. I look like the most concentrated cashier ever at times! haha

  6. #6
    ISTP - The Mechanics

    Quote Originally Posted by browneyes94 View Post
    So how did you deal with your problem in school? Did you become more disciplined as time passed? Or was it because you had something like an important exam coming up?
    Mostly, I did all the "little" assignment and I aced all my test, but I wouldn't turn in essays. I actually can write very well, but I hate to do it when I'm forced. I would know all the material, but would I have to work my grade up, because I couldn't be bothered. I was too busy in my introverted world.

    When I was in tenth grade, I walked out of an exam with 105%, an exam I wouldn't have had to take if I had just written and turned a paper. I realized for all my "brilliance" that I was being pretty stupid. I had to reach this conclusion the hard way by myself on my own terms, even with my INFJ mother trying to be "understanding" and my ISTP father telling me "So what if you got a B! You had a cake walk A." This was his wake-up call to me. It wasn't his way to ride my butt, but he knew how to get to me: speaking to my inner principle of personal competence.

    It took a lot of effort, but I forced myself to do the work. Even now in college, I have to force myself to do projects: essays, speeches, presentations. I would say I am a more "disciplined" individual than I was in high school, but I don't know if I would be seen as "disciplined" according to Je standards. And I really don't care. But I procrastinate like nobody's business and wait until the very last minute to do that kind of stuff, but I can say that I do the work and I do it well. And that's good enough for me.
    browneyes94 thanked this post.

  7. #7
    ISTP - The Mechanics

    If you're an ISTP, school is all about finding out what you're capable of. The marks you get will have no actual bearing on your life.

    Quote Originally Posted by browneyes94 View Post
    My aunt thinks he has some attention problem but I think he just needs to be more determined in helping himself get over this problem. I don't think my parents would want to give him any presciption pills for ADHD so he has to solve this problem by himself, without medication.
    The idea of medicating a child to turn him into something he's not, is sick.

    Quote Originally Posted by browneyes94 View Post
    Are there any ISTPs who have/had this problem too? How do you help yourself to stay focused during your study time? What motivates you to work hard to achieve your goals?
    You see it as a problem because you're a J-type. From the perspective of a non-medicated ISTP, working hard to achieve goals is something we're very picky about. We don't just do it because someone else said so.
    browneyes94 thanked this post.

  8. #8
    ISTP - The Mechanics

    Quote Originally Posted by browneyes94 View Post
    He has interests in sports, and toys that require building or putting together such as Bionicles. I think you could be right about him being undisciplined. He does 'work' on videogames and toys for hours but not his school work.
    I knew it!

    I would like to add that it wouldn't be a good idea to force him. You'll probably just meet with more resistance. I would know: The Js in my family never had much success at forcing me to do anything I didn't want to do. You might have to let him fail, if he's being really stubborn. But, knowing ISTPs and 12-year-olds, I would say he's just a kid. Not an excuse, but merely a statement. He still has plenty of time to grow up.
    browneyes94 thanked this post.

  9. #9
    ISTP - The Mechanics

    Quote Originally Posted by rousse View Post
    If you're an ISTP, school is all about finding out what you're capable of. The marks you get will have no actual bearing on your life.
    Me? Oh, yes, I agree. My dad's philosophy with school for me was if I tried my best and got a C, then he'd be happy with a C. But, he knew I was more than capable of getting an A, and just wasn't doing the work, because I was lazy. Plus, he did spend thousands of dollars to send me to private school, so I think he had more than a little say in my report card.
    browneyes94 and rousse thanked this post.

  10. #10
    ISTP - The Mechanics

    Quote Originally Posted by browneyes94 View Post
    He has interests in sports, and toys that require building or putting together such as Bionicles. I think you could be right about him being undisciplined. He does 'work' on videogames and toys for hours but not his school work. When I ask him what his problem is he says he is lazy and unable to focus on his school work. Which shows he is uninterested and not bothered.
    So how did you deal with your problem in school? Did you become more disciplined as time passed? Or was it because you had something like an important exam coming up?
    I'm assuming he's a bit like me, since I can identify myself with a lot of the things you said.

    I wouldn't push him, I was just like him at his age, though probably a bit worse. They thought I had ADD or some other behavior disorder because I would never pay attention, I would almost sabotage the teaching, be a smartass and in general be a big pain in the ass for any teacher.
    What changed me was when we started getting grades, and I could be kind of competitive.

    If he's anything like me, he will probably put this off, and then not too long before the exam, he'll sit down and be EXTREMELY effective with the reading and will most likely do good. I don't need more than reading through something twice before it's stuck in my head. What I need before that is to clear my thoughts and process other things before I can sit down and read, and only when the pressure is on, will I be able to do that without somehow getting more stuff to process.

    If you want to motivate him, and you don't trust that he'll study effectively the last week or day, try making it seem a bit more important than it really is, almost tricking him into taking it as a challenge instead of work. This though, might be a bit counterproductive, as sometimes if I start studying when something isn't close enough, I'll just forget it, or get bored before I'm done, which is something you definetly don't want. If I stop something like that, I'll be a bitch to get started again.

    The worst thing you can do, is make it seem like he's following a plan, or doing something you want.Try not telling him what to do. If you do force him after a while, expect a long and hard fought battle, he'll oppose your authority and he will most likely not study because he knows that's a way to get to you. (Immature, but effective, trust me)


    Also, could you clarify what kind of exam he's taking? We don't get grades or take exams in Norway until we're 13, and having a big national exam that matters for something that early seems pretty alien to me.
    browneyes94 thanked this post.


 
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