Get a Grip

Get a Grip on Focusing Issues before they become All You Can Think About

The human mind is a powerful thing. Think for a moment about the developments in technology and science that have happened in your lifetime. Humanity has managed to develop innovations in transport, medicine and communications. The ideas that have become reality make science fiction of the 1960s look limited and unimaginative. All of which makes you feel pretty lacklustre when you can't find your keys or phone in the morning.

Problems with focus and memory affect a larger number of people than most would imagine. Little over a decade ago, the condition of attention deficit disorder was felt to be something that affected children alone. What's more, it was viewed by many as simply an excuse for behavioral problems in those children. Even now there is still skepticism. This is despite more information being available and those beliefs debunked.

Problems with memory, focus and motivation still affect a number of people who may not be diagnosed with ADD or ADHD. These issues are frustrating and can be an impairment to people's lives. And the medications available for those conditions are almost uniformly stimulant-based. This naturally makes many people reluctant to take them even if they have a full diagnosis.

Dealing with issues of concentration, then, is a tricky thing. If you don't want to take stimulants, or even if you do, there are challenges. But there are things you can do to limit the effects of cognitive difficulties.

  1. Caffeine

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Yes, it is a stimulant, admittedly. It is, however, a gentler stimulant with fewer side effects than common ADHD medication. A cup of coffee first thing in the morning, with top-ups when you find your mind wandering, can make a big difference.

  1. Herbal Supplements

With many pharmaceutical treatments, one or more of the key ingredients are taken from plant extracts. In many medications for Alzheimer's disease or dementia, the active ingredient is Galantamine. As a herbal supplement, this can be used to treat issues with cognitive function. Better yet, Galantamine is available over-the-counter. This means that you don't have to go through a long wait to see if a doctor will allow you to have it.

  1. Exercise
Exercise Cycle

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There is a cliche surrounding many issues to do with mental health, that if we just go for a walk they will resolve. This is damaging and false. However, exercise can be a positive way of directing some of the excess energy that characterises attentional issues. On its own, it won't fix things. As part of a holistic approach to solving the issues, it can be invaluable.

  1. Improve Your Sleep Hygiene
Sleep Hygiene

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It's not news to anyone that you will be at your worst if you're not sleeping. A solid night's sleep of at least six hours is recommended by doctors. You can take less sleep at night and take top-up naps if that suits your schedule better.

In addition, the things you do around sleep can make a big difference. Don't take your phone to bed; staring at a screen before you close your eyes drives a big truck through the quality of sleep you get. Also, although a lie-in is tempting, don't oversleep. That can blunt you as much as not sleeping enough.

  1. Meditation

Meditation Heals

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Part of the problem with focus issues is the desire to over-focus on one small aspect of what you're doing. Because you know you have this issue, you try too hard. This doesn't actually help and becomes a kind of tunnel vision.

Taking the time to sit and center yourself will help. Breathe deeply. Stretch out. Listen to some calming music if you have the chance. It will allow you to think things through more completely, and you'll do a better job of resolving whatever it is you're trying to resolve.

In keeping with some of the above advice, it's important not to just look at any one of these points and think that will do. Dealing with issues of cognitive function requires you to take a more rounded approach.

When you have a handle on these issues, you will see improvement in every aspect of your life. You'll be able to take on projects you had previously set aside as not being practical. The end result of this will be that even when you aren't at your best, you can deal with it and you'll feel better emotionally, mentally and physically.

Meditation Cartoon

• Meet the Author • Julius Rogers

Julius Rogers is a health freak and loves to pen health articles that teach, educate, and entertain. He writes health information at various health outlets. Be sure to check out his other ventures!

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