The following is a list of tips and suggestions for a routine that will allow you to maximize your concentration whilst stuck behind a desk for a majority of every weekday.
1. Forego that Next Episode, Rise Early and Don’t Eat Meat (Night to Morning routine)
We’ve all been there; up late at night watching your new favorite TV show, and the episode you just finished was a real doozy. The temptation of watching the next episode in line is considerable, almost too much to handle. Yes, things do get tough this early in the list.
I propose you forego that extra episode and give your body the greatest gift it can receive: sleep.
Once you make the decision to head to bed at a reasonable hour, you’ve taken the first step in preparing yourself for a productive tomorrow. You also have given yourself a much better chance to wake up early and successfully complete your morning routine.
Whatever your morning routine may be, I highly suggest that it include breakfast. In my life I have found that breakfast definitely is a game changer, one that always helps define what type of day I am about to have. When thinking of the perfect breakfast foods, you can’t go wrong with some complex carbohydrates in the form of granola and grains. However, DON’T EAT MEAT! Bacon and sausage contain saturated fat, making them an unhealthy addition to your morning meal. Saturated fat will slow your blood circulation, causing you to feel sluggish after eating rather than full of energy. Breakfast meats are also high in sodium, and too much sodium can cause bloating, leaving you feeling uncomfortable, which is a risky way to start your day.
Read more about what not to eat during your breakfast meal: http://www.livestrong.com/article/319344-foods-to-avoid-at-breakfast/#ixzz23wKCMSN3
- Early to bed, early to rise
- Eat breakfast, but skip the saturated fat (meat)
2. The State of Half-Awake (Groggy-face to Game-face)
Now that we’ve talked about what slows your blood circulation, let’s put some effort into giving that circulation a jump start. Increasing your circulation is imperative for focus, as it allows more blood to flow to your brain. An effective morning routine that includes exercise, no matter how brief, will help you in your efforts of achieving max concentration.
How else can I open my blood vessels and improve my circulation?
- Increase intake of vitamin B3 (Niacin)
- Herbs such as Ginkgo biloba, Rosmarinus and Zingiber officinalis help improve circulation
- A hot shower will force blood to rush to the skin, greatly improving circulation
3. Keepin’ it Fruity with a Mid-Morning Snack Attack (After Breakfast to Before Lunch)
As previously stated, eating foods high in saturated fat can slow you down, so definitely avoid those foods when making yourself a mid-morning snack. Here’s a link to a great article on snacks that have been proven to increase your productivity. Among these snack are avocados, raisins, and almonds.
Healthy snacks give you a boost of energy and help keep your metabolism going at a solid rate. They also can help improve your eyesight and memory. Sounds good, right?
Best Snack Foods to Help Increase Focus:
- Nuts (Almonds, Walnuts, Pecans)
- Complex Carbohydrates with Flax Seed
4. I’ll Tell You What’s Not For Lunch (The Pivotal Noon-time Decision)
In my opinion, lunch is a death trap that severs all the hard work you’ve put into being productive. The noon-hour break may seem nice at the time, but once you’re back in the office, it’s nigh impossible to reassume the productive groove you were once in. Here is my proposition:
Instead of taking a lunch, plan out 3 small meals during your work day. This allows for the needed breaks during the day, but spread out and on a smaller scale. When you work through the lunch hour, odds are you’ll be able to maintain efficiency and make the rest of the day go much quicker. This also eliminates the that “2 o’clock feeling” that most people dread.
Replacing lunch with small meals spread throughout the workday could be the solution to that time of day when you start to feel like molasses.
5. Brain Boosters
When it comes to the supplements that miraculously cure all the issues you’re having, I tend to be quite skeptical. However, this doesn’t mean ruling out herbs and other supplements that can help you in reaching your goals. I underline help because there is no such thing as a “cure all”. Supplements help in individual areas, but thinking they can make up for a poor sleep schedule or poor eating habits is just silly.
Brain Boosters that have helped me:
Ginkgo biloba – It’s important to not expect dramatic changes in your memory when taking Gingko. However, I have found that when attempting to get into “the zone”, Ginkgo biloba can make it much easier to board the productivity express train and ride it all the way to Gettin’-it-donesville. On the flip-side, if I slack on maintaining my healthy food and proper amount of sleep routine, it detracts from the benefits Ginkgo can offer.
GungHo – GungHo boasts the tagline, “Ninja-like focus”. Now, I’ve never been a fan of energy drinks or sugar-loaded gels. However, ever since my work-buddy gave me a packet of GungHo, I’ve been an advocate. It’s incredibly smooth with no crash whatsoever. Promoted by the Brain Institute at the University of Utah, the science of GungHo is what impressed me the most. I highly recommend you check it out.
6. The Perfect Playlist Closer
My profession is one where I’m constantly typing, but can do so while listening to music. This is why the perfect playlist closer is so imperative. When you’re feeling good because of the healthy choices you’ve made earlier in the day, there’s nothing like racing to the finish line of the work day, energized by a playlist of your favorite tunes.
My personal choice of music is house music mixes, most likely found at the Top House music blog. Pre-made playlists are perfect as you don’t spend too much time worrying about what song is coming next. Fall into the groove and be a work-day closer.
7. Rinse & Repeat
Healthy eating and a solid sleep schedule are only achieved by regular practice. Now, the morning and night-time routine you choose may be different, but do what makes you feel best in the long run. The best part of this list is that it doesn’t only affect your workplace efficiency, but makes the rest of your day much easier to handle.
David Fesler is an internet marketer that works for full service web design and internet marketing firm, Infogenix.