Feeling Foggy? How to Focus and Get More Done!

While it’s true that we all have the same number of hours in a day, some of us seem to be able to get a lot more done than others. If you feel like you’re always busy but never make a dent in your to-do list, it could be because you aren’t focused. Here are 8 tried and true tips for amping up your focus and feeling more accomplished at the end of the day!


It Starts with Sleep

If you’re tired from a poor night’s rest, the next day will suffer. No matter what you do, you simply won’t be at your best. So start things right the night before with at least 8 hours of rest.

Eat Breakfast

You won’t get far on an empty tank. Unfortunately, most breakfast foods are laden with simple carbohydrates which will give you a quick burst of energy—and then a steep drop. Instead of reaching for cereal or a pastry, go for a slow-burning breakfast that puts the spotlight on protein, healthy fat, and whole grains.

Plan for Breaks

One reason you may have trouble with focus is that you aren’t taking enough breaks. Try the “Pomodoro” method (named for a tomato-shaped kitchen timer), which alternates 25-minute blocks of focused activity with 5 minutes of rest.

Don’t Multitask

Anyone who claims that multitasking boosts productivity has clearly never tried. It’s just common sense that trying to focus on two things at once cuts your attention in half. When you’re working on a task—whether it’s cleaning your home, weeding your garden, or writing an email—give it your all.

Make a List

A to-do list can help you stay on track, but if the list gets too long, it can become overwhelming. That’s why you should actually keep two lists—a longer one of the things you’d like to accomplish, and a much shorter one with just the next three things you need to do. Once you complete those three steps, you can add the next three, and so on. Try it—it really works!

Get Some Fresh Air

When you’re taking those planned breaks, if possible head outside. A little fresh air and sunshine will recharge your batteries much better than staying indoors to look at your phone.

Do the Thing You’re Dreading First

Instead of putting off that one task you really, really don’t want to do…tackle it first. The “eat that frog” principle states that you should do the worst, most unpleasant item on your list first thing in the morning to get it over with.

Be Realistic

Finally, the reason you feel unfocused and unproductive might just be because you’re trying to do too much. Some days will be better than others, but as you age, you’ll naturally start slowing down. Be realistic about how much you can get done in a day, and don’t be too hard on yourself if you fall short.