Operational definitions are necessary for testing cognitive models: When irrelevant info overwhelms us, we get distracted. Conscious efforts can become automatic over time. Objects within the spotlight are strongly attended to. Taking possession of the mind in a clear form by simultaneous trains of thought. Withdrawal from some things in order to deal with others. The opposite is a confused scatterbrained state of mind. Selection - attending to an object to distinguish it from unattended objects ie. when you first put on a brand new shirt it"s very soft but throughout the day you don"t notice the softness as much. Automatic processes - fast, efficient, triggered involuntary and capture attention. Ie. pulling over in response to ambulance sirens. Controlled processes - slow, effortful, triggered voluntary and consciously to objects of interest. Ie. making subtle lane changes on a long drive. Breakthrough effect - when participants remember unattended information. Ie. if somebody says your name at a loud party.