I have found that closing my eyes while doing the challenges helps my concentration. HOWEVER - I find myself doing it when I am speaking to people “in the wild” when I need to think hard - which can be funny or embarrassing! I MUST try to stop myself doing it! In the meantime, if you see someone walking around trying to speak Welsh with their eyes shut it could well be me!
Make sure you don’t do the challenges whilst driving.
I remember reading years ago that the visual signal always triumphs over the aural signal, and so if needing to listen intently, closing one’s eyes is not a bad idea. I often do this listening to serious music (not while driving, obviously).
And if listening to Radio Cymru sitting down at home, I will quite often close my eyes then.
And if I’m Skyping in Welsh, I’m quite happy if the other person doesn’t have a webcam (as I don’t). Then I can concentrate on the sound and not have any visual distraction. I know other people prefer to be able to see a face though. It may be because I grew up listening to radio (not having a TV until relatively late), and grew quite used to disembodied voices.
I suppose though as a conversational gambit wyneb a wyneb, it’s a bit of a risky strategy.
So long as your interlocutor’s still there when you open them you’re probably doing OK
I have the same problem I’ve tried to listen to the challenges whilst gardening but found that my brain “switched off” when I was tugging at a weed, but if I was doing something fairly static then I was able to concentrate on trying to say the Welsh. So I tend to just let the Welsh flow over me and get on with the gardening. However, I found when using my exercise bike (those static fold-up ones) I could concentrate perfectly on the lesson but forgot I was cycling - which is great as I’m finding myself “cycling” for 30 minutes or more. Without the Welsh, usually it’s 5 minutes and I’m bored and tired.
I must be really weird! If I can’t see, I have trouble hearing! I am probably the only person who has ever answered the phone with the immortal words, “Hang on a minute, I’ve got my sunglasses on and I can’t hear you!” That was when the phone was a single one in a dark hallway!
I can’t look for an address when I’m driving if the radio is on. My kids used to think it was hilarious that I had to turn the radio off in the car when we got close to an unfamiliar place, even if it was just music.
Interesting how the senses interact with each other, isn’t it?
I’m just the same crossing a tricky junction or similar. Radio off, so’s I can hear myself think…
Lorry drivers that I’ve met fall into two categories in the (admittedly limited) experience I’ve in that game. They either need quiet to find somewhere as they maintain the level of awareness you need while ensuring up to 44tons of HGV doesn’t crush something it shouldn’t, or it doesn’t make any difference to them.