6 Ways to Improve Your Mental Clarity and Focus

This is a guest article by Sam Terry
____________________

A scattered mind produces scattered decisions. A symptom of our over-stimulating, technology-saturated world is mental paralysis. That constant stimulation causes your mind to become clear as mud.

Neuroscientists have blamed the clutter of technology for shrinking attention spans and the ability to learn. With so many devices competing for your attention, your neural pathways are rewired into shallow minds that can only handle 144 characters at a time.

Thankfully, there are healthy habits to pull your brain back from cluttered thinking; Dr. Gary Small, Professor of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at UCLA says, “The brain can right itself if we’re aware of these issues.”

Here are 6 ways to improve your mental clarity and focus”

1. De-clutter your physical space

There’s a strong link between your physical space and your mental space; mess creates stress. Physical clutter is distracting and bombards your mind with excessive stimuli. The space where your most important work takes place should be a sanctuary.

Place any items outside your field of vision when it is not in use; out of sight, out of mind. The same rule applies to your computer desktop, create folders for every item and avoid a cluttered online work space.

2. Develop a routine

Sport psychologists run athletes through specific steps before making a play. Some of the movements seem unusual and arbitrary, but they’re designed to put the mind into a familiar state to recreate a successful performance. In the same way, having your own daily routine or morning ritual creates a familiar ‘comfort zone’ for your mind to do it’s best and most focused work.

Whether it’s coffee or some light reading before you start work, experiment with different work spaces and routines that allow you to be at your most productive and focused. We are creatures of habit — leverage this by recreating the settings where your mind works at it’s best.

3. Tap into your “flow state”

Have you ever been so absorbed in a task that you lose track of time? It’s a mental state known as “flow;” your mind becomes immersed into the activity.

In order to tap into this state, there is a sweet-spot between your level of skill and the challenge of a task. If your skills are greater than the challenges of task, then you fall into “boredom,” if your skills are lower than the challenges, than you experience “performance anxiety.”

The goal is to always stretch yourself beyond your current level of skill, but not so far that you’ll break. This sweet-spot between challenges and skills puts your mind into an optimal state of focus, pulling all your attention toward the task at hand.

4. Stop multi-tasking 

“Concentrate all your thoughts upon the work at hand. The sun’s rays do not burn until brought to a focus.”

— Alexander Graham Bell

The ability to multi-task is a false badge of honor. Multi-tasking is really a misnomer, better defined as “task-switching.” It is useful in few occasions — when dealing with medial tasks, but has adverse affects when trying to be productive in detailed and important tasks.

Use the “3-to-1 method;” narrow down your most important tasks to 3, and then give one task your undivided attention for a period of time. Allow yourself to rotate between the three, giving yourself a good balance of singular focus and variety.

5. Work/Rest ratios 

Studies have shown that workers are most focused and productive when following the rhythm of a work/rest ratio. The Pomodoro technique advocates working for twenty minutes followed by 5 minutes of rest. Other techniques suggest following a 52 minutes work, and 17 minutes of rest.

To focus well throughout the day, it is important to allow your mind to rest after processing a lot of information. Experiment and find an effective ratio for you.

6. Diet and sleep

It is true — you are what you eat. Heavily refined foods and foods high in sugar have been shown to have detrimental effects on our thinking process. And lack of sleep has also been linked with poor thinking and learning.

As best you can, steer away from foods with preservatives and additives; get into the habit of checking food labels. And in terms of sleep, the consensus for “enough” sleep is between 7-8 hours.

_______________

Author Bio:

samSam Terry is a lover of people; and lifelong student of human relationships, behavior, and cultural habits. She has traveled the world and lived in France, Denmark and Canada. From a young age, Sam has been passionate about psychology and an avid reader of self-help books. She is motivated by the idea that so much of your life in within your control.

Today, her mission is to help others optimize their thoughts and emotional states to master their life.

14 Responses to “6 Ways to Improve Your Mental Clarity and Focus”

  1. May 16, 2017

    Annie lewis Reply

    Nice post 🙂

  2. May 16, 2017

    Annie lewis Reply
  3. June 8, 2017

    KBL HAIR Reply

    kbl hair

  4. […] that I’m not affected by supplements that use carbs and caffeine to stimulate giving you mental clarity and more energy but only leave you crashing within the hour. If an energy supplement actually has […]

  5. October 14, 2017

    Jasa backlink Reply

    What i do not realize is in reality how you’re no longer really
    much more well-appreciated than you may be right now.
    You are so intelligent. You recognize thus significantly when it
    comes to this subject, made me in my view
    imagine it from numerous numerous angles. Its like men and women don’t seem
    to be interested except it is something to accomplish with Woman gaga!
    Your own stuffs great. Always take care of it
    up!

  6. October 15, 2017

    free seo Reply

    It’s impressive that you are getting ideas from this article as well as from
    our discussion made here.

  7. I feel this is among the such a lot significant information for me.
    And i am glad studying your article. However should observation on few normal things, The website taste
    is great, the articles is truly great : D. Good activity, cheers

  8. November 6, 2017

    etsy Reply

    I used to be suggested this blog through my cousin. I’m
    now not sure whether or not this submit is written by him
    as nobody else know such distinctive approximately my trouble.
    You are wonderful! Thanks!

  9. November 7, 2017

    Mervin Reply

    Comprobante de domicilio (original y copia).

  10. November 8, 2017

    leg gun holster Reply

    While the Jawbone UP Transfer we’ve already highlighted is an outstanding price ranhe health band, so is its rival
    the Misfit Flash.

  11. November 13, 2017

    Antigua y Barbuda Reply

    Hi there to every one, since I am in fact keen of reading this webpage’s
    post to be updated daily. It contains pleasant data.

  12. November 21, 2017

    hair overnight Reply

    Good – I should definitely pronounce, impressed with your web site.
    I had no trouble navigating through all the tabs and related information ended up being
    truly simple to do to access. I recently found what I hoped for before you know it
    in the least. Quite unusual. Is likely to appreciate
    it for those who add forums or something, site theme .
    a tones way for your client to communicate. Nice task.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


*