How often do you find yourself feeling bogged down, running on low to no energy, or dealing with foggy memory? Let’s discuss some strategies to increase productivity and boost brain power to enhance your life experience.
The natural aging progression can be altered by incorporating the following healthy lifestyle choices. Remember, you don’t have to change your life overnight, just take your time adding one healthy choice at a time. You are working at your own pace towards your personal health goals.
As you read, keep in mind that these are basic suggestions and ideas you can implement as you create your new healthy lifestyle. When you think about your goals focus on creating healthy habits that will support your brainpower and productivity. Be sure you take into consideration the things you are already doing and how you can implement one action at a time.
Did you know that brain health consists of six areas of wellness? In this report, you will learn about each of these areas as well as acquire helpful tips and ideas to make each one a healthy habit in your daily routine.
● Physical Exercise
● Food and Nutrition
● Medical Health
● Sleep and Relaxation
● Mental Fitness
● Social Interaction
It is important to note that the outcome of your brainpower goals is to know what works best for your physical and emotional wellbeing, paired with your overall goals of health and wellness. Don’t allow yourself to get caught up in trying to follow unhealthy trends and ideas. Below are some healthy habits that are centered around the six areas of wellness for your brain and productivity.
1. Daily Exercise – Exercise is known to help with memory and even with thinking through difficult or complex issues. When you exercise the chemicals in your brain help reduce stress, increase your mood, and help you sleep better. Begin by choosing an exercise that you like because you will be more likely to stick with the plan daily. Combination exercises such as walking, dancing, bicycling, and weightlifting are especially beneficial to your brain since you use several body parts to perform the movements.
2. Enjoy Outdoor Nature – How often do you spend time outdoors? Enjoying nature on a regular basis can help you increase your creativity, happiness, and kindness. The many benefits of scheduling time to work or play outdoors include decreasing your stress, depression, and anxiety. Additional benefits of outdoor activities include strengthening your awareness, while increasing your creativity and problem-solving.
3. Eat More Fruits and Vegetables – Did you grow up hearing your parent tell you to eat your vegetables? There are many foods that can enhance your productivity. Some popular green vegetables include spinach, kale, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, collards, celery, and other green vegetables. You also need to eat red, orange, and yellow vegetables. Try to combine these vegetables in stir fry dishes, soups, or smoothies.
Add a variety of seasonings to your vegetables to flavor them. This increases the likelihood that you will eat more of them. If you don’t like a particular vegetable, there are dozens of other options so just keep introducing a new vegetable one at a time.
For an added boost include fresh fruit such as blueberries, cranberries, strawberries, apples, peaches, pears, and pineapple. This is easily done by adding fruit to a smoothie at snack time.
4. Use Healthy Fats – You are often told to stay away from fats or fatty foods. However, you can consume healthy fats such as almonds, olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil, as well as fish oil. These foods can be combined with some healthy vegetables to create new dinner and snack ideas. If you find that you don’t like a particular type of fish, try other types.
Keep introducing new foods and creating new ways of cooking healthy foods to know what you like best. You can even mix vegetables with healthy fat such as an avocado into a smoothie as a breakfast replacement. Thinking outside the normal is a great way to expand your taste buds while meeting your brainpower goals.
5. Reduce Alcohol – Did you know alcohol reached your brain within 5 minutes of taking a drink? Alcohol consumption is known to cause you to remember less, increase negative emotions and actions. Though your entire body absorbs alcohol, your brain is affected in many ways including the ability to process information and to communicate. If you are one to enjoy a nightly alcoholic beverage there are ways to you can reduce this by replacing that beverage with another enjoyable beverage. Perhaps you may have to stop purchasing and bringing the alcohol into your home that way you are not tempted to take a drink.
6. Drink Coffee – Are you a coffee drinker? Did you know that the caffeine in coffee is said to help promote dopamine? Dopamine is a chemical that boosts your mood. If you are not a coffee drinker or can’t tolerate caffeine, simply smelling fresh brewed coffee can give you an energy boost. The caffeine in coffee can boost your productivity, which stimulates you to accomplish more in your day. If you aren’t a coffee drinker, don’t worry. There are other healthy alternative beverages you can drink, such as green tea. It can give you similar brain-boosting benefits as coffee.
7. Decrease Sugar – How often do you read the nutrition labels on your healthy foods? There are many hidden sugars in foods that are marketed and labeled ‘healthy’ These can be listed as honey, fructose, dextrose, or other names.
Compare food labels and choose products with a low amount of added sugars. Make your own desserts instead of purchasing them at a bakery. This enables you to control the amount of sugar being added to the products.
You can make simple swaps to reduce your sugar intake. You may prefer to eat fresh fruit instead of candy or infuse your water with fresh or frozen fruits as well as one-hundred percent fruit juices.
8. Adequate Sleep – Do you have a regular sleep schedule? Most adults do not get the recommended 7-10 hours of uninterrupted sleep. Sleep deprivation can increase harmful plaque, as well as affect your thought processes. Studies show this can lead to an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease and lead to heart disease.
Some people grossly underestimate the amount of sleep that they get each night. While you sleep, your body makes minor repairs to your brain and body. If you struggle to get enough sleep for your age, try taking a warm shower or bath before bedtime. Also, look around your bedroom to see if there are any blue lights from devices or lights from other sources that may keep you awake or wake up throughout the night.
9. Social Life – How often do you spend time with friends? Spending time with your friends and social network is shown to help reduce stress, depression and stimulate your brain. An increase in your social interaction also helps slow Forming new friendships can be exciting but don’t overlook the friends you’ve had in the past. If your friend circle is not as active as you would like considered joining clubs or volunteering at a local organization. Finding friends that share the same hobbies and are like-minded can often be the answer to expanding your social life in a healthy manner. Keep in mind that the quality of friendship is better than the quantity.
10. Eat Chocolate – Did you know dark chocolate contains caffeine if you don’t care to drink coffee then you have the option of eating dark chocolate. It is reported that dark chocolate, eating in moderation, has the same effects as caffeine in coffee or green tea. Organic dark chocolate is shown to reduce stress and improve brain function by increasing blood flow to the brain. Among other benefits of eating dark chocolate would include creating new nerve connections, called synaptic connections, which helps with memory and mood. When looking for high-quality dark chocolate be sure to read the ingredients on the back of the label and look for at least 70% cocoa.
What are your initial thoughts after reading these ten healthy lifestyle habits that will boost your brainpower and increase your productivity? Do you immediately identify areas where you can implement healthy changes in your life? Creating new habits that will benefit your overall health and productivity goals can seem overwhelming at first, so it’s important to take one action step at a time.
Don’t allow yourself to get caught up in the “all or nothing” mentality. Remember, the key to consistent exercise is finding something that is of interest to you. Whether you prefer to exercise alone or find you need additional support to stay motivated, the important thing is to just start. There are many options available to you when it comes to exercising these days, you can exercise alone outdoors or join a live online exercise group from your computer or smartphone. Don’t overlook the opportunities within your community such as the local gym, specific exercise groups that meet at the local park, or even neighborhood health groups. You might even be surprised at the interactive technology that is available to you today so you can exercise in your home while participating in live classes.
Something to consider as you implement any of these new healthy lifestyle changes is to consider how you can combine two or more choices in the same activity. For example, you could combine social interaction, nature, and exercise into one activity simply by enjoying a brisk walk with a friend or family member in your neighborhood.
Some additional ideas to make incorporating several healthy choices together so you can increase your productivity while boosting your brain health would be to invite friends or family over for dinner and serve fresh fish or lean beef, with a variety of healthy brain-boosting vegetables. You could create soups, stews, or even stir-fry meals. If you were to do this suggestion you would be combining healthy fats, brain-boosting vegetables, and social interaction. Take this idea one step further and offer green tea, water infused with fresh mint and fruit, and forgo the alcohol.
When it comes to boosting your brainpower and increasing your productivity it is important to take a closer look at the foods you are eating. The right kind of food can increase your focus, memory, and stabilize your mood. If you are not a vegetable eater, start by trying one type of vegetable at a time. On the other hand, if you already eat vegetables, take a step out of your comfort zone, and introduce a new one or try to prepare it in a new way.
Changing your normal eating routine can help boost your brain by forcing it to think in new ways. Have you considered scheduling a diner outside of your home or usual eating place? Perhaps you can join a local dinner group where you get the opportunity to expand your social group while trying new foods.
There is a wide variety of creative and enjoyable options that can increase your productivity while boosting your brainpower. Many of these options can fit any budget and schedule. Think about your goals and how you can expand your circle of influence. You may want to explore new hobbies such as cooking or exercise classes. Think of the benefits these healthy choices can bring to your life and choose options that will make the greatest impact in your life.
Consider adding one or more of the following healthy foods to your diet to help increase brain functions. Look at the following list of healthy foods and consider what you need to add to your diet, based on the benefits that each food provides.
● Whole grains preserve memory and decrease inflammation of the brain.
● Sunflower seeds fight off sleepiness while enhancing your mood.
● Grass-Fed Beef provides iron and increases your stamina.
● Greek Yogurt helps to boost your mood.
● Eggplant increases brain function, bone health, and heart health.
● Pecans boost your memory, mood, and energy levels.
● Tuna fish relieves depression, increases productivity, and reduces impulsiveness.
● Walnuts help to balance your serotonin, mood, and appetite.
When you prepare your weekly meal plan think of new ways to incorporate these healthy foods. If you are not into cooking but are willing to learn, find cooking shows on TV or do an internet search for online videos using the foods you want to try. There are hundreds of options online; however, if you are trying to expand your circle of friends contact your local health department for culinary classes near you.
Many of the local cooking classes come with hands-on cooking experience while providing you with a menu. Keep in mind that you “eat with our eyes” first. If you are trying new foods, read a book or take a course to make your food look more appealing. A couple of creative ways to do this is by using pretty plates and adding garnishments to the food on the plate.
Do you notice any connections between eating healthier and incorporating exercise into your daily routine? Both activities can enhance your overall mood while stimulating the release of growth factors in your brain. When you think about the effects of daily exercise, it is clear the benefits are worth the effort. Simply decide on what activity you can start today regardless of the weather or location and make note of how you feel. You may notice over the course of days how much energy you have and how well you are sleeping at night.
Over time, you will see how little thought it takes to exercise, because it’s part of your routine. If you are bored with your routine, consider joining an exercise group or local gym. Any initial struggle you may feel will subside and you will look forward to exercising. Be patient with yourself as you introduce new foods and schedule workouts.
If you want to expand your social network but you are more of an introvert, start with small hobby groups. Check your local community’s resources to see if they offer programs or classes that interest you, such as hobby-focused classes, topic focused meetups, or exercise groups.
There are dozens of healthy habits that you can incorporate into your life that won’t be difficult to implement. When trying to form new habits there is something to consider so you don’t feel overwhelmed. It will take discipline and focus to make your habit run on autopilot. So, don’t get discouraged if it takes longer to develop your habits than you expected. Just stay on track and stick with your plan.
Below are some tips that you may find helpful:
● Choose one habit to add to your day and stick with it for 30 days.
● Ask a friend or family member to join in on your fun.
● Focus on one small habit at a time.
● Keep track of the habit and how you feel.
● Anticipate and plan solutions for common obstacles you may face.
● Make your new habit part of a routine.
● Reward yourself when your actions become a habit.
● Make consistency a top priority to ensure that you stick with the new habit.
● Replace an unhealthy habit with a healthy habit that helps you achieve your goal.
Create a Healthy Lifestyle Journal about the lifestyle choices you need to change and why. Then, journal about the healthy habits and choices you want to implement. Journaling daily will encourage and inspire you throughout the process. In addition, it will hold yourself accountable for your actions or inactions. You will also want to write down your detailed goals in your journal. This makes your ideas clearer, which enables you track and focus on the results better.
Journaling can help you stay motivated, keep you focused on the end goal, and clear your mind from cluttered thoughts. Additionally, journaling helps with brainstorming, planning, and analyzing your activities, which all work together to bring you closer to your goal.
Keep the benefits in mind as you implement a new habit or change an unhealthy habit. When you begin to improve your overall health and wellbeing, remember that it takes time, patience, and dedication. The nice thing about creating a healthy lifestyle is that you are in complete control of your choices and the timeline you use.
An easy way to implement healthy habits is to select the easiest habits. For example, adding fresh fruit to your cereal in the morning, taking a brisk walk on your lunch break or organizing your desk before you quit for the day. You can reduce many of your struggles, if you focus on your goals, identify why you need the new healthy habit, and take steps to achieve the outcome that you want.
Now you know more about the six areas of brain health and have ideas of how you can create a healthy lifestyle that will boost your brainpower and increase your productivity. Be patient and give yourself at least 21 days to form a new habit before adding a new habit. If you discover that you are struggling in an area, find a friend or an experienced mentor who understands your issue and can give you sound advice.
I’m bestselling author, entrepreneur and productivity and time management expert Connie Ragen Green, focused on increase productivity and boost brain power for myself and others. Come along with me on this journey and let’s build a world that makes a difference.