Quite often, we suffer from a lack of concentration, and that hampers our performance. While various factors like age, mental health, and such contribute to your facing this problem, you can check out some simple routines that can help effectively boost your focus.
Productivity is not always a function of how much time a day you spend working. Sometimes, working just 3-4 hours can end up being more productive than a day trying to work for more than 8 hours. This is because our abilities to focus varies from day to day, and even hour to hour. Lack of focus is one of the greatest enemies of productivity.
You can try all sorts of productivity hacks like defining your daily goals, dividing each activity into smaller tasks, and hanging a Do Not Disturb sign at your door. But some days, your physiological energy levels just don’t support a productive day.
Concentration or focus is the targeted mental effort toward what you are striving to attain. Whether it is preparing for an exam, working on a project, or solving a puzzle – everything needs focus. You might get frustrated when you are trying to concentrate but are unable to.
In this article, we delve into the simple routines you can adopt to boost your focus. So, let’s get started.
How do you maintain your focus to ensure a productive day?
One of the best ways to maintain your energy levels for a productive day is to take the right vitamins and supplements, and eat the right foods. However, even if you consume the right natural energy boosters, this is only half the battle. To experience the full effectiveness of these natural concentration enhancers, you must adopt a few simple and healthy behaviors throughout the entire day. Adapt these 6 simple routines to boost your focus and get more work done today.
Simple Routines to improve your focus
Exercising isn’t just good for your body, it can naturally help improve your brain’s ability to focus. For example, aerobic exercises help produce catecholamines — a type of neurotransmitter — in the body that increases concentration levels. Studies have found that physical exercise helps enhance the brain’s ability to ignore distractions. Therefore, a quick jog or even a brisk walk during break times can significantly help improve your focus. In one study, students who engaged in moderate physical exercise before taking a test had better attention spans than students who didn’t exercise
Regular exercise not only builds your body but also boosts your focus. While experts advise on aerobic exercises, you can plan and practice what is possible for you. You don’t have to be a fitness freak, however, spending at least 20 minutes every day on exercises keeps you stay physically and mentally healthy.
Get a Sufficient night’s sleep
Experts say that adults must get a night’s sleep of 7 to 8 hours every day. Lack of adequate sleep results in nausea, hypertension, and poor concentration. Follow strict schedules concerning night sleep. Don’t sleep with hunger or overstuff yourself. Do something relaxing, such as listening to music or praying for some time before you go to bed.
Research has shown consistently that sleep deprivation has profound negative effects on cognitive function, including damaging effects on focus and memory. In addition, your ability to learn and generate new memories depends on sleep quality. Lack of sleep also hinders your brain’s ability to regulate emotions, so you might be extra stressed, impatient or irritable. All of this affects your ability to focus and be productive at work. To improve your sleep, try these simple tips:
- Keep a regular schedule.
- Give yourself enough time to wind down.
- Get plenty of light during the daytime, especially the morning.
- Avoid excessive liquids at night.
- Practice meditation or deep-breathing techniques
- Get rid of your clock.
- Get out of bed if you can’t sleep.
Practice mindfulness meditation
Mediation techniques, particularly mindfulness meditation, contribute significantly to improving memory and concentration. Meditation doesn’t imply just sitting with your eyes closed. Even Yoga, breathing, and relaxation methods constitute meditation practices.
An extensive 7-year study showed that meditation improves your ability to focus and concentrate on work. It also suggests that meditation can keep your brain young and active. In other words, it could prevent age-related mental decline. A 2016 study published on the New York Times showed that just 3 days of mindful meditation can strengthen areas in your brain that enables you to focus and regulate stress.
Write It Down
While information, tasks, distractions, and responsibilities keep increasing, the space in our brains and the number of hours we have in our days remain the same. Writing things down is a simple yet powerful way to record anything and everything that has your attention. This allows you to clear your mind, and focus all your attention onto one task at a time. Writing things down also helps clarify your goals, priorities, and intentions.
Here are 5 industry leaders who write things down:
- Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group
- Oprah, former talk show host of the Oprah Winfrey Show
- Tim Ferriss, podcaster and author of The 4-Hour Workweek
- Tony Robbins, motivational speaker and author of Awaken the Giant Within
- JK Rowling, novelist and author of the Harry Potter series
When your brain isn’t busy trying to remember everything, your brain works better on other tasks – like creative work, for example. Writing things down enables a higher level of thinking, and therefore, more focused action. It is an easy yet effective way to increase productivity and deal with day-to-day tasks.
These types of headphones can be extremely useful for focusing since it eliminates most outside sounds. Dr. Oz says people who have lots of noise around them have difficulties concentrating at the office or at home. By using simple tools like these to eliminate external distractions, you’ll quickly improve your concentration.
Check your diet
Diet plays an integral role in boosting your focus. Eat fresh vegetables, fruits, and eggs while avoiding too much sugar and oily or fatty foods. Besides, spinach and fatty fish also help increase cognitive abilities like focus and memory. Having a kingsized breakfast could improve your concentration. Include healthy items like those rich in protein and fiber. In addition, drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated helps boost focus.
Just as food can improve your body’s energy levels and ability to function, it also has an incredible ability to affect your mental clarity, memory, and concentration. If you’re looking to boost your focus, one of the places you should start with is what you’re eating. Some foods that will help you improve your focus include:
- Green tea
- Leafy green vegetables
- Fatty fish
- Dark chocolate
- Flax seeds
Spend time sharpening your brain
Apart from exercises, a healthy diet, and good sleep, you must resort to some techniques to sharpen your brain. An idle mind also starts losing its concentration power and memory. Kids must be engaged with word games, jigsaw puzzles, and coloring books. Older adults must undergo various sessions of cognitive skills training as they tend to lose focus and memory faster.
Listen to music
Listening to soft instrumental music while working is a great way to boost your focus. While not everyone may like music, however, if you do, playing it while working or studying could increase your concentration levels.
You can deliver the desired outcomes only when you invest focused efforts. Lack of concentration hampers the attainment of your personal and professional goals alike. Do follow the various simple routines outlined here to boost your focus.
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