Most of the time, the problem with productivity isn’t with finding the motivation, but with sustaining it. That’s where most people struggle the most.
Mainly because what they really need are science-backed solutions to help them increase their productivity and boost their concentration and mental focus. This article has all six solutions to this barrier to productivity. Here’s how to boost your concentration and focus.
Practice Mindful Meditation
Meditation is the art of silencing your mind. Believe it or not, that’s not easy to do. Keep in mind, if you’re thinking about nothing, you’re still thinking, and that’s what makes it challenging. At Columbia University, researchers discovered that meditation can reduce stress and anxiety, changing the brain structure and aiding focus. Remember, stress and anxiety are two of the most focus-threatening factors. To mindfully meditate, sit on the ground or on a comfortable chair with a straight back. Keep your breathing slow and steady. To silence your mind, the key is not to block the thoughts from coming up but to address them, let them go, and return back to the silence. Start by practicing for a few five-minute sessions every day and then increase when you’re ready.
As humans, we are incapable of multitasking. We can think we are doing it, but the truth is, our minds are just shifting from one task to the other. It’s similar to how you can’t function on two tabs at once. tIn fact, the more tabs you have open, the slower your device gets. Similarly, the more your brain is required to shift from one task to the other, the longer it takes to make that shift. See, each task you do comes with its own rules and cognitive requirements. For the brain, it’s better to finish one task before moving onto the next. That way, it can dedicate its undivided efforts to the task rather than waste energy switching between tasks.
Who said you can’t take supplements? Some brain health supplements are highly recommended because they contain ingredients, like essential brain chemicals and nutrients that promote nervous system functions. According to a product review, anyone can experience enhanced focus and concentration, from kids to adults. If you stick to the recommended dosage, you’re guaranteed to benefit from the positive effects. That said, it’s important to understand that good brain health supplements don’t function in the same way as Adderall which is a stimulant and not a nutrient-rich supplement.
Work in Short Bursts
You might think that what you need is to be working for a prolonged amount of time, but science begs to differ. In the 1980s, a man called Francesco Cirillo came up with a time management technique called the Pomodoro Technique. It’s where you work for 25 minutes, then take a five-minute break to reset and recenter your mind. The technique helps you maintain and realign your focus. That way, you get to stay actively engaged in the task you’re carrying out.
It’s not good in excess, but when taken in small doses, caffeine can be a helpful pick me up. It’s a stimulant that helps the brain focus by providing the body with a boost of energy and alertness. Of course, if you have a problem regulating your anxiety, caffeine isn’t recommended as you’ll end up worsening the symptoms. See, anxiety has similar symptoms to the jitters that come with caffeine. If you are suffering from generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), this correlation could lead your body to think it’s in danger when it’s not.
According to a 2015 article published in The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, listening to nature sounds while working can help increase concentration, productivity, and overall satisfaction. What’s more, it’s also been discovered that any instrumental music, as long as it’s in the background, will help you increase your focus. The genre of music that helps might differ from one person to another, but it has got to be an instrumental track. Lyrics will only serve to distract you.
It turns out that maintaining your focus isn’t really that hard, after all. It’s all about knowing how to realign your focus and how to stay engaged in the task at hand. Take the time to research the methods mentioned to find out the most suitable ones for you, then give your top candidates a try. Don’t take the easy route, trying each method for a task or two. Your brain will need time to get used to any new routine, so give each method its fair share of time until you’re sure it won’t work for you.