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Attention and Moving


Explanations > Perception > Attention > Attention and Moving

Description | Example | Discussion | So what?



When you want to get somebody's attention and particularly when they may be distracted by something, move them to a place where there is no distraction.

If you cannot move them, sometimes you can move yourself to block the view of what they are looking at (and put yourself in their line of sight).

Another use of movement is to remove the things that may distract your subject so they have little to look at but you.

When using movement, give a valid reason for doing so, so it seems you are trying to be helpful. For example you can suggest going somewhere quieter where you can pay more attention to what they want (and of course they can also pay more attention to you).

A related way of using movement is for you to visit them at their home or place of work. You are now moving to a place where they feel more comfortable.


A mother moves her child away from the television and computer in order to talk about something that needs their attention.

A sales person moves the customer to a quiet area where they can talk without distractions.

A teacher moves the posters that are on either side of their writing board. The pupils now have less to distract them so they are more likely to look at what the teacher is writing.


There are many distractions in many situations where you want to get the attention of people. Separating the person from the distraction can be done in a number of ways, usually involving some kind of physical movement (although virtual movement may also be relevant in some circumstances).

Moving the person is an act of control, and if you are successful in this they will accept your direction more readily next time, including to do as you really want them to do.

So what?

When you need attention, consider how movement of some kind may help you. Be creative in this, considering who or what may be moved, to where, when, and so on.

See also

Distraction principle


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