In an entry entitled Flying and Concentration, David Megginson of the Land and Hold Short blog makes the counterintuitive statement that once in the air, its the LACK of concentration that makes a good pilot. Why? Well, David states that when you are flying:
There are lots of things happening at once, and every one seems to need your attention all the time. You simply can’t focus on a single task and finish it. Concentrating on tuning the radio? Guess what, your altitude just changed by 200 ft. Trying to get the gyro compass set correctly? Looks like you just blew through your next checkpoint. Trying to figure out where you are on the map? Maybe you should recover from this incipient spiral, first.
Case in point: Remember that commercial airliner that crashed in the Florida Everglades some years ago because the entire crew was concentrated on trying to fix a broken light indicator? They didn’t realize that they had slowly descended to a level just above the ground until it was to late.
So remember, concentration on the ground, especially before a flight during the flight planning stage, is a good thing but to much concentration in the air can in fact become deadly.