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Tips on How to Improve Concentration and Boost Productivity

by Mara Welty June 30, 2024 5 min read

 Improve Concentration and Boost Productivity

During the workday, it’s common to feel that afternoon slump. You know the feeling — your eyelids feel a bit heavier than they did just a few hours ago; your focus starts to drift from the important task at hand; and your to-do list starts to look like a mountain you’re not sure you can climb. 

Fortunately, there are several strategies you can adopt for better concentration when it begins to wane, and we’re exploring four of them below.

#1 Prioritize a Healthy Diet

Food is your fuel. According to Harvard Heath Publishing, nutrient-rich foods can nourish the brain and protect it from oxidative damage, which can help maintain mental clarity and focus throughout the day.

In the same vein, high-sugar and processed foods can harm the brain, impacting concentration and mood, which can negatively impact your daily productivity and mental health. 

More specifically, the foods you eat can impact your levels of serotonin, a hormone that acts as a natural mood stabilizer. Within the body, the majority of serotonin is produced within the gastrointestinal tract. However, when your gut is flooded with poor-quality foods, its production of serotonin can decrease.

To prioritize your brain health, you can bolster your diet with the following nutrient-rich additions:

  • Leafy green vegetables – Begin your day with an egg scramble or omelet, complete with kale, spinach or broccoli. These vegetables are high in vitamin K, lutein, folate and beta carotene, which help to fuel the brain and reduce cognitive decline.
  • Fatty fish – Fatty fish like salmon, cod and canned tuna are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. These compounds work to reduce cellular damage and improve brain health. You can also find omega-3 fatty acids in plant-based foods like flaxseeds, avocados and walnuts.
  • Berries – Studies have shown that berries like strawberries and blueberries may help improve your memory and reduce cognitive decline.
  • Walnuts – Rich in protein, walnuts provide the building blocks for neurotransmitters, the chemical messengers that facilitate communication between brain cells. Additionally, walnuts contain healthy fats, including omega-3 fatty acids, which have been linked to improved memory and cognitive function.
  • Tea and coffee – Caffeine-rich tea and coffee may help improve your concentration skills in the long term and enhance your ability to make and recall memories. 

While high-quality foods can be more expensive, understanding how to eat healthy on a budget can help you stay consistent with your diet and see results.

If time is also a constraint, exploring the benefits of meal prepping allows you to manage your schedule more effectively, freeing up time for other tasks. You can also incorporate nutrient-rich supplements and protein shakes into your diet for an easy and convenient helping of brain power. 

#2 Regular Exercise

Studies have found that regular, moderate-intensity exercise — 150 minutes a week for at least six months — can help improve your memory and cognitive abilities. That said, what exactly defines moderate-intensity physical activity?

In essence, moderate-intensity physical activity includes any movement that raises your heart rate by 50 to 60% higher than your resting rate. For example, if your resting heart rate is 60 beats per minute (BPM), you’d want to find a workout routine that gets your heart beating to at least 90 to 96 BPM. 

Potentially beneficial exercises can include:

  • Brisk walking
  • Water aerobics
  • Biking
  • Dancing
  • Tennis
  • Hiking 
  • Rollerblading
  • Tai chi

To the latter, a study conducted by the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society found that tai chi can help improve executive functions in older adults like planning, attention, problem-solving, verbal reasoning and working memory. 

#3 Practice Mindfulness

Mindfulness techniques may help improve cognitive function and overall mental health by enhancing attention span, memory and executive function. 

Specifically, mindfulness meditation involves tuning into the present moment and cultivating an awareness of your thoughts, feelings and sensations without judgment. The latter is crucial, as self-judgment can commonly arise when productivity wanes. 

Remember, productivity isn't solely about how much you can accomplish in a day; it's also about how well you can sustain your well-being while doing so. Mindfulness offers a way to balance the demands of productivity with self-care. By accepting your thoughts and emotions without judgment, you can cultivate a sense of inner peace and resilience that empowers you to navigate daily challenges with improved focus, clarity, and composure.

Here are a few tips for how to improve concentration with mindfulness meditation:

  • Find a comfortable and quiet place to sit or lie down
  • If you’re in the middle of a workday, set a time limit 
  • Begin by breathing in deeply through your nose
  • Hold your breath for a few seconds, then breathe out through your mouth
  • As your body begins to relax, bring your awareness to your feet and move your way up the body
  • Identify any sensations or thoughts that arise, then let them go
  • If you find yourself dwelling on a feeling, return your focus to your breath

#4 Train Your Brain

Some evidence suggests that games that aim to improve your cognitive abilities may be effective. These types of games can include puzzles, memorization and problem-solving tasks designed to challenge and improve:

  • Attention span
  • Cognitive flexibility
  • Problem-solving
  • Reasoning
  • Working memory
  • Decision making
  • Multitasking

Further, in 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a brain game that has been shown to decrease symptoms low attenion span. That said, the effectiveness of brain games is not the same across the board and will depend on their unique design and focus. 

To train your brain on your own, you can:

  • Learn a new language
  • Practice math problems
  • Play a new instrument
  • Play a card or word game
  • Complete a jigsaw puzzle

Enhance Your Concentration and Productivity with INVIGOR8

Fortunately, there are many ways you can improve your productivity and mental focus throughout the day, from exercising regularly to prioritizing a healthy diet. If eating a nutrient-packed diet isn’t yet a habit, there’s the INVIGOR8 Organic Superfood Powder

This convenient all-in-one protein shake is crafted with a number of nutrients, including cognitive enhancers like L-theanine and bacopa herb extract to help improve mental focus and concentration. Plus, it’s bolstered with immune- and digestion-boosting ingredients to support full-body health and wellness. 

Whether you’re struggling to get through a workday or can’t find the motivation to finish your weekend chores, INVIGOR8 is here to deliver vitality-boosting protein powder ingredients with every sip. If you’re seeking weight loss support, explore our full weight loss kit, which includes our organic superfoods powder, natural appetite control support, and unflavored collagen peptides. Boost your health and productivity effortlessly with INVIGOR8 today.

 

Sources:

  1. Better Up. 15 ways to improve your concentration even when you are busy
  2. Harvard Health Publishing. Tips to improve concentration
  3. Harvard Health Publishing. Nutritional psychiatry: Your brain on food
  4. Harvard Health Publishing. Foods linked to better brainpower
  5. Harvard Health Publishing. Exercise can boost your memory and thinking skills
  6. Chopra. The Benefits of Mindfulness Meditation for Cognitive Health and Learning
  7. Very Well Mind. What Is Cognitive Training and Does It Work? 

 

About the Author

 Mara Welty
Mara Welty

Mara Welty is a copywriter who specializes in health, wellness and CBD topics. With a background in journalism, she aims to deliver engaging, research-based content that builds trust and engages readers through informative storytelling.

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