Education & Career Trends: October 2, 2022
Curated by the Knowledge Team of ICS Career GPS
Do you ever struggle to get into a “flow state” when writing? Unfortunately, it can happen to the best of us. As a writer entering the “flow state” is the same as an athlete “being in the zone.” It is that special phenomenon where everything seems to click. You are able to churn out novel and creative thoughts and the words seem to come easily to you.
Creating flow involves using logical connections between ideas, strong topic sentences to start paragraphs, transitions to link sentences, concise wording, and a varied sentence structure.
However, this state may not be easily achieved at certain times and can cause stress especially when you need to meet deadlines and there is no time to deal with writer’s block.
Here are seven tactics to help you get focused and enhance your creativity:
1. Eliminate all distractions.
- It is no secret that distractions are all around you. The email inbox and social media are two of the most common productivity killers, and you deal with them on a daily basis.
- When those notifications start sounding, people often drop whatever it is they are doing to check on new information.
- Eliminate these interruptions that compete for your attention.
- First, silence your phone, so that text messages, calls and emails cannot tear you away from writing.
- Another great option is a browser extension that limits the amount of time you spend on certain websites.
- You can also choose to work in a place or setting where you can be relaxed and focused.
2. Listen to mild instrumental music.
- Many people enjoy listening to music while working.
- Did you know there is a way you can make your playlist much more productive for you when you are writing?
- Musical repetition helps get you into the zone so your brain can focus more intently, without becoming distracted by other noise.
- Ultimately, your brain registers the tones as background noise instead of a competing sound.
- Classical music or some type of white noise typically produces the best results.
3. Stay hydrated.
- A variety of side effects can creep up on you when your body becomes dehydrated.
- Some people get headaches, others experience severe brain fog, often referred to as “brain fatigue”.
- It can leave you unfocused and reeling from reduced mental acuity and/or poor memory recall.
- When your body becomes dehydrated, brain fog can appear without any warning and make it much more challenging for you to enter a flow state.
- Keep a water bottle at your desk or other work areas as a subtle reminder to keep sipping.
- Make certain you drink at least eight-ounce glasses of water per day.
4. Don’t depend on stimulants.
- Although it may seem nice to put a few cups of coffee in the tank before you sit down to write, you should be mindful of how much caffeine you are actually consuming.
- Too many stimulants can leave you feeling jittery and unable to focus.
- Instead of loading up on multiple cups of coffee or tea, try restricting yourself to just one or two throughout the day.
5. Take a nature break.
- If you feel as if you have come down with a case of mental fatigue, give yourself the freedom to take a break.
- Step outside your work zone and leave the office environment behind for a dose of mother nature.
- A University of Melbourne study found that looking at grassy rooftops helped people reduce the number of errors they made and also improved their concentration.
- Even a small break to get some fresh air can help decrease stress levels and re-energise your senses.
- If it is too cold to get outside, you might be surprised to learn that looking out your window can do the trick, too.
- Whatever you do, make sure to incorporate short breaks throughout the day.
6. Fit in physical exercise.
- Physical exercise is crucial for a healthy mind and body.
- Regular movement makes a tremendous difference.
- Getting out for a walk can actually help improve your concentration and focus, even when done just a few times per week.
- Researchers at the University of Illinois found that walking for 40 minutes, three times a week, improved cognitive function.
- It enhanced the connectivity of brain circuits, helped combat declines in brain performance associated with ageing and increased performance on cognitive tasks.
Have you checked out yesterday’s blog yet?
Applications of Robotics and Automation in 2022
(Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the article mentioned above are those of the author(s). They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of ICS Career GPS or its staff.)