Take A Walk
There are so many benefits that can come from simply taking a walk when you’ve hit a mental speed bump. I've recommended walking the block as a way to stay active which at the office. But, in addition to burning a few calories, going for a stroll can leave you feeling refreshed and ready to get back to the task at hand.
Turn On The Tunes
According to Everyday Health, taking a little break to listen to music can actually help your body produce chemicals that can boost your mood. If you’re feeling tired and sluggish, throw on your headphones and listen to a pump-up song that will make you feel upbeat. If you’re feeling stressed and down, listen to something soothing. Just make sure the music doesn’t distract you further — limit it to one or two songs.
It’s easy to get carried away with socializing when you’re in need of a break. But, if you've been studying alone for hours or haven’t stepped away from your desk all day, having a little social interaction might be what you need to get back on track. Call your family when you’re walking around the block (two birds with one stone!), or chat around the water cooler with your coworkers. Taking a few minutes to engage with actual people — not computers — will have you feeling more focused when you go back to your desk.
Drinking enough water throughout the day is key if you want to think clearly for hours on end. In reverse, being dehydrated will leave you with a headache and make you feel groggy. If you get bored of water, add a few pieces of fresh fruit to your H2O or sip on herbal tea. Need further convincing? A recent study from King’s College in London revealed that being thirsty can decrease productivity by 10 percent and even weaken hand-eye coordination. Drink up, ladies!
Soak Up The Sun
If you’re feeling unfocused and sleepy, you may just need a little vitamin D, otherwise known as sunshine. Sunlight stops the production of melatonin and even a little exposure to natural light can prevent you from feeling tired. Spend your lunch break eating by a window or take an outdoor study break for a dose of mental clarity — just make sure you lather on the SPF!
Getting your tasks organized and prioritized is one of the best ways to focus your energy into projects that matter. But, while writing down all of your to-dos is a great strategy, what’s more important is to write down goals that are realistic. If you have a long day ahead of you, I suggest making two different to-do lists: The first should be all of the tasks that must get done that day, and the second can be longer term objectives that you might be able to tackle once everything else has been completed. This will help you to zero-in on what you should really be focusing on.
Turn It Off
Simple as this: If you need to get something done on your computer, turn off your phone for a few hours. If you’re cramming for finals but you keep seeing emails pop up on your laptop, put your computer on sleep and move it to another room. This out-of-sight-out-of-mind trick totally works, most of the time. According to Forbes, knowing when to turn certain distractions off will instantly recharge you. And, trust me, there will always be time to see the latest photo on Facebook or text your friends back.
Choose Super Foods
I am a big fan of superfoods like berries, walnuts, spinach, and avocados. Not only can they make your hair silky and your skin clear, they are also proven to help your brain perform memory and cognitive functioning tasks. Huffington Post reports that going on a “brain diet” by eating these superfoods can improve blood flow to the brain and regulate your blood pressure. When you feel like you’re hitting a mental block, grab a handful of blueberries or whip up a spinach salad. (Major bonus for all you latte lovers: Coffee makes it on the list of mental superfoods!)
Create An Inspiring Space
Personally, I need my surroundings to be beautiful and inviting in order to be inspired to work. Feeling stir-crazy and uninspired is a recipe for becoming entirely unfocused. If you work in a cubicle, set a colorful bouquet of flowers atop your desk and pin photos to your walls. (Click here for some inspired ideas to makeover your workspace.) Likewise, if you are trying to log in a productive day of studying, opt for a library with a view or go to a quaint coffee shop.
Stretching your body will promote blood flow to your brain and limbs, which will help you to concentrate. Even alternating between standing and sitting during the day helps to keep your body alert. Try swapping out your desk chair with an exercise ball or investing in a standing desk.
Do you have any tips that help you to concentrate? Leave them in the comments below!
From her laid-back, effortless style to a fresh, ahead-of-the-trend beauty aesthetic, Lauren Conrad is a girl after our own heart. So, each week, the born-and-bred California girl and editor-in-chief of LaurenConrad.com will share with us her insider secrets and personal musings. Plus, check out her visually stunning guest pinning here!