Boost your concentration and get more from yourself with these tips.
We’ve all been there: facing a task we struggle to complete.
It may seem impossible to just crack down and get it done.
Especially when there are kids running around, bills needing to be paid, household chores to attend to, and the other 900 thoughts that run through our heads.
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Boost your concentration by trying the following:
Why does this happen?
It’s not as if the assignment is cripplingly tricky; it’s more like our brains refuse to function correctly.
Here are a few ways you can help yourself out!
1. Find/Create Quiet Space
Concentration relies heavily on your environment.
Imagine trying to complete a vital work assignment: Could you perform better at the Super Bowl or in your tranquil home office?
Outside noise will distract your attention from the duties at hand, leaving you with poor concentration.
Find a place where you can really zero in on your duties.
2. Focus on One Thing at Once
Focus is precisely why you wouldn’t want to take an essential task to the Super Bowl: You’d be too distracted to concentrate.
Trying to complete two things at once only hinders your concentration.
You may think multitasking is beneficial.
On the contrary, when you have numerous items on your plate, each receives less attention and is completed with a lower standard.
It’s like trying to appreciate a delicious dessert when you’ve been forced to shove a heinous entrée into your mouth simultaneously: You can’t concentrate on one over the other.
Narrow your lens; cover less ground to improve your focus.
3. Chew Gum
There’s something about the motion of chewing gum – it’s a relatively mindless gesture that arguably boosts concentration.
Some teachers allow children to chew gum during class because, according to teacher and principal Carolyn Cybulski, “Oral activity can be very calming.”
She adds, “The act of chewing gum also provides constant sensory input to the muscles in the jaw and ears and we find it helps children to concentrate better.”
Maybe it could do the trick for you, too?
4. Get Ample Sleep
Are you prioritizing quality sleep hours?
You should be.
To go without enough sleep – generally at least seven hours – is a big mistake.
In addition to crippling your health and making you more vulnerable to depression, lack of sleep impairs your concentration.
You also want to avoid sleep disruption throughout the course of the night.
Basically, when you sleep well and wake up refreshed, it’s as if sleep has lifted the fog from your brain.
Without that decent sleep, the fog will continue to build until your mind is essentially worthless.
5. Make a To-do List
Know what’s on your plate ahead of time.
Tackling your duties when you know precisely what you must complete is easier than going in blindly.
Having the list drawn out in advance also assists you in focusing on just one item at a time.
Work on one, complete it, cross it out, and move on.
6. Take a Cold Shower
Need a jolt?
A little something to shove you into focus mode?
Step into a cold shower.
The frigid temperature will increase blood circulation and wake you to the world around you.
Your brain will be on full-alert survival mode – unlike when it’s completely relaxed in a hot bath/shower – ready o take on anything.
7. Listen to Certain Varieties of Music
Although some may consider music a distraction, certain melodies have actually been seen to boost concentration and productivity.
In fact, in a study involving workers, those listening to music completed duties quicker and more creatively than their tuneless counterparts.
There are a few suggestions as to why this may be the case: music reduces stress, grounds a wandering mind, and helps to block out distracting noises, to name a few.
8. Prioritize Comfort
When you’re sitting in a hard chair with an achy back, it’s hard to do your best.
What if you were perched on a plush, body-hugging sofa rather than a rock-like seat?
You wouldn’t be distracted by bodily pains and discomfort.
Instead, you could put all your brain’s efforts into completing the tasks.
9. Eat Well
Your diet impacts your concentration.
What foods you consume, and the total amount of intake can affect your focus for better or worse.
Whole foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and grains, are renowned for positively boosting one’s ability to concentrate.
On the contrary, filling up with sugar, fat, and carbs will provide minimal fuel for your mind and body.
Stay satisfied, too, with the amount of food you eat.
Hunger pangs are distracting.
10. Exercise Daily
Use your muscles to wake your brain.
According to Harvard Medical School, regular exercise releases brain chemicals key to memory, concentration, and mental sharpness.
As it turns out, your morning jog does more than sculpt your calves.
11. Drink Enough Water
Water is essential for existence.
Not only does it keep us hydrated for physical excursions, but it also fuels our brainpower.
Because our bodies comprise more than 70% of the substance, water is key in every one of our functions.
Becoming dehydrated directly impacts your concentration, so drink up.
12. Know When to Break
There is such a thing as overworking your brain.
When this happens, when your brain is exhausted, it won’t work at its max.
Just like your body after a rigorous workout, your brain needs a rest.
Rather than push your brain harder, know when to throw in the towel.
Allowing occasional breaks, despite seeming like a waste of time, will help you make the most of every minute.
Start boosting your concentration skills today
Which of these tips are you excited to implement right now?
Some might take more practice than others, but most of us could replace our uncomfortable office chair right now!
Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.
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