Category Archives: Vision Tips

Shifting Attention

Baskets of dried fruit at Vienna's "Naschmarkt" Farmer's Market
Baskets of dried fruit at Vienna’s “Naschmarkt” Farmer’s Market

Healthy eyes are always moving, we just don’t notice. If your vision is blurry you are probably staring at the screen, trying to see as much as possible at once. That’s not how our eyes work though, they are not like a camera! Our eyes can only see a very small point perfectly clear at any given time, but move so fast that it feels as if we see the whole screen at once.

Take your glasses off if you wear any, then click the picture above to enlarge it. Practice eye movement by letting your eyes wander over the different baskets of dried fruit. Close your eyes and remember what you saw. Repeat. Maybe you notice how the baskets seem to move in an opposite direction to your eye movement. Once you feel more relaxed you can let your eyes move from one fruit piece to the next within the same basket. Close you eyes and remember the pieces of fruit and the movement.

For myopia:

Look outside and move your eyes across trees, houses or windows, whatever you can see. It’s ok if it’s a blurry as long as you can make out shapes. Notice how your objects seem to move in a opposite direction. Close your eyes and remember the movement and what you saw. Repeat. When closing your eyes again, remember what you saw, then imagine it clear. Open your eyes. Different or same?

End with a 5-10 min palm and relaxed breathing. Enjoy the darkness and rest. Remember to move your eyes across the screen next time you work on the computer, and look into the distance every 10 minutes!

Color of the Day

Leaves showing the beautiful colors of the seasons

Every fall I am in awe of all the colors leaves turn into. The closer to death the more beautiful they become. We on the other hand often feel getting old means getting ugly and full of wrinkles, or worse, sick and helpless. Maybe we should think of aging in the context of green leaves slowly turning into an intense glowing red.

I encourage my students to pick a color of the day and keep looking out for that color during the day, in a gentle, relaxed and interested way (ideally without glasses or contacts). Looking for that color keeps us in the here and now, instead of being carried away by our thoughts, worrying about this or that, composing a to-do list in our minds…

Instead of focusing on what we don’t see we can relax into noticing what we do see: our color! It’s suddenly everywhere! How strange… well, it’s not really that strange. We just asked our mind to notice and not to think or judge. That makes a big difference, we might be caught by surprise about how much detail suddenly appears. It’s this positive attitude to seeing that we need to “heal” our vision. My color today was the intense wine red of the right leaf. What is yours?