How many times have you found yourself sitting in a meeting, yawning, pinching yourself or grinding your teeth? How many days have you gone to the coffee machine multiple times, begging the caffeine to create some energy and get you out of this rut at work? Most people wake up, maybe grab some breakfast or at least a shot of caffeine, go to work, and assume they can stay consistently focused without taking any steps specifically designed to replenish and maintain their energy at work throughout the day.
If you’re having difficulty staying focused and feeling stuck at work, you can follow the 6 tips below, adapted from Dr. Hallowell’s book:
His book was recommended in “8 books to Read When You’re Stuck in a Rut at Work“
The Sensational Six*
Prep works relies on “the sensational six.” Do the things recommended below and your brain will give you much more time in flexible focus if you prepare it every day by following each of these practices so you’ll spend less time in a “rut” and be more productive.
- Sleep – one of the greatest favors you can do for your brain and your entire body is to get enough sleep. Sleep is tonic. Reset your priorities to make time for sleep. Set a regular bedtime and get-up time. Do make sure you have comfortable bedding. Reserve your bed for sleep; not work – don’t bring your screens into the bedroom.
- Nutrition – when you don’t eat right, your brain can’t function well. Eat a breakfast with protein. Eat a balanced lunch. Use a fruit snack and a burst of exercise to combat the blahs. Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables to feed your brain the micronutrients it needs. Watch the amount of coffee you drink.
- Exercise is beyond doubt one of the best tonics available for your brain. You can start by walking every day with a friend; schedule time each week to play a game of some sort; i.e., golf, squash or tennis; or join a gym.
- Mediation can lower stress levels and blood pressure, increase energy and cognitive function, and make you calmer and happier. You can start by sitting in a comfortable chair, both feet on the floor and both hands comfortably placed on your lap. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing. In, out. Watch your thoughts float by like leaves on a river. Try not to evaluate your thoughts, but rather let them pass by without a comment or a care. You can meditate for just a 5 minutes or more. Try to meditate daily and it will help you focus better.
- Mental Stimulation – When you stretch your brain by trying new tasks or doing everyday tasks in a way you’ve never done them before, you are doing something that will not only enhance your ability to maintain focus, but also help stave off the ravages of aging, include dementia.
- Connection – The human connection is the most powerful force in the world for growth, health, fulfillment, and joy. I call connection “the other vitamin C” or “vitamin connect.” You can get tips on ways to connect here.