Do you have trouble staying motivated? Find yourself losing focus whenever you try to get things done.
If so, you’re not alone. A lot of us have a hard time concentrating and being productive.
After all, it’s easy to get distracted. Whether it’s text messages, emails, or Netflix shows, many things threaten to steal your attention all day. If you give into temptation, it’s easy to go entire days without getting a single thing done!
Luckily, there are some strategies you can use to train your brain to be more productive. Instead of getting frustrated and giving up, try to enhance your brain power using these five techniques.
You’ll be amazed by how well they work!
1. Exercise Your Brain
The brain is a muscle. Just like your biceps and quads, it needs exercise.
But how do you exercise it? I mean, you can’t exactly lift weights with it or put it on the treadmill.
No, you can’t. But you can exercise it in other ways.
Most cognitive function experts recommend games and puzzles, for example. Puzzles and games like chess allow you to use your brain in ways you normally wouldn’t.
When you work through a difficult puzzle, your brain’s neuroplasticity improves. This means it has an easier time forming new connections between its parts. As more nerve cells connect, you have an easier time thinking strategically, managing changes in your environment.
Strategy and flexibility are some of the keys to productivity. You’ll be much more productive if you plan days, weeks, or months ahead while leaving room for change.
Games also help improve attention span, language comprehension, short-term memory, and other cognitive functions.
2. Train Your Brain for Deep Work
Most of us have trouble focusing on one thing at a time. With so many responsibilities and distractions, it’s hard to imagine sticking to one project for six, seven, or even two hours straight.
But you can’t harness the full potential of your mind without learning how to engage in deep work.
Think about it:
Greek philosophers used to sit and think about the same thing for days. When did you last think about anything for more than a few minutes?
The best way to start training is to go for it–start an hour-long project and don’t stop until it’s complete.
If that’s too hard, start in fifteen-minute intervals. Set a timer, take five-minute breaks, and return to work.
Eventually, you’ll be able to focus on one task for hours without interruption.
This skill is essential for people who must get multiple things done daily. If you lack focus, you’ll find yourself switching from task to task without completing any of them.
Make it a regular habit to engage your brainpower, and you’ll be more productive. You might even wind up with some free time in the end!
3. Design Your Schedule Around Your Internal Clock
Everyone has “peak brain” times. We’re different, but everyone has an internal clock and accomplishes work better during set times.
You should build your schedule around your peak brain hours. Working when your brain fires hot will help you get much more done.
If you’re a morning person, have a ton of energy between 8 AM and 12 PM, start early, and hit the ground running. If your peak hours are after midnight, take care of your hardest tasks while everyone else sleeps!
Take it from Jeff Bezos. The billionaire CEO (probably one of the world’s busiest men) identifies 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM as his peak performance hour.
“I like to do my high IQ meetings before lunch,” he says, “Anything that’s going to be mentally challenging, that’s a 10 AM meeting.”
Furthermore, you should also avoid working when there are distractions around you.
Instead of fighting against your internal clock, use it to your advantage. Unless you have a strict work schedule, structure your day so you can work during your most productive hours.
4. Practice Meditation
You can also improve your brain cognition by practicing meditation techniques. Harvard researchers found that meditation reduces anxiety, increases mental clarity, and enhances memory.
It’s easy to do, too. You can meditate almost anywhere, anytime. All you have to do is focus your energy on a particular activity, thought, or object. Over time, it’ll help you train yourself for heightened awareness.
Meditation aims to achieve an emotionally calm and mentally clear state of being. Mental clearness can help you retain information, make better decisions, and manage stress.
You’ll easily get things done if you experience less stress throughout the day.
Try to implement a few minutes of meditation daily. You’ll be pleasantly shocked by how much it improves your life!
5. Rest Your Mind
It’s important to exercise your brain. But it’s essential to get some rest as well.
Boost your brain power by taking short breaks throughout the day. Walk, talk to a friend, or play with your day. You might try doing something easy and creative, like doodling or journaling.
There’s no point in sitting at your desk and dragging through work to get things done. If you’re exhausted and working at a turtle’s pace, what’s the point of pretending like you’re being productive?
Breaks give a chance to get reinvigorated. That way, you can get back to work feeling inspired and refreshed! While they might seem like the enemy of productivity, breaks can help you get much more done!
The Bottom Line
Your brain holds a lot of power. It’s in your best interest to train it, nurture it, and give it a rest when it needs one. Without a healthy brain, you’ll find that your productivity suffers.
Instead of just using 10% of your brain, allow it to adapt and grow using the five methods we discussed. Exercise, meditation, rescheduling, and rest can all help you optimize and train your brain for higher productivity.
By caring for your brain and exercising it, you’ll be able to harness the power of your mind and get more done throughout your days.
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