My immune system is a bit compromised and I struggle with frequent colds viral plagues. When this happens, brain fog can really be a struggle. When I feel like this, I have no motivation at all. And not only that, it makes my chronic illness and pain worse. I’m learning to improve the lag time that I usually struggle with and I wanted to share my 5 simple tips to recover from brain fog, illness or any time you might be struggling with focus.
The longer you stay in bed, the harder it can be to get moving again. No matter how awful you’re feeling, take some gentle and simple movement breaks, even if it’s just to go and sit outside. Moving around gets your lymph glads and your brain to come back to life. And if you’ve been too ill to shower for a day or two (or more!) treat yourself to a hot shower with some nice soap and a sugar scrub. Even if you have to go right back to bed, you’ll feel so much better. I recommend Healthy Moving to learn how to incorporate healthy movement breaks into your day no matter how badly you’re feeling!
As much as I’ve heard this advice throughout my life, often the first thing that goes when I get sick is adequate fluid intake. Not drinking will slow down recovery and make you feel even worse. So fill up a big cup with your favorite flavored water combination and some crushed ice. You’ll notice an immediate difference in your overall wellness.
I really struggle with nausea and loss of appetite at times. When this happens, I have no motivation to eat well and days will go by where I eat mainly soft foods and few fruits or vegetables. Not only that, but I struggle with sugar cravings too. Following a simple low carb diet and eliminating sugar and processed food will help you feel better.
Just Pick One Task to Start
When you’re coming back after illness, it can be really overwhelming to look around the house at the mess and your running to do list. First, get out your journal. Get back into gear by focusing on one simple task and get that done. Then move on to the next task. Choose wisely and then put your hair in a scrunchy, drink some coffee and blast your music…whatever gets you going and get it done! Doing this will usually bring your focus right back and after getting through a few tasks you’ll find that you can start to multitask if the need arises.
As you get better, aim to start your day with a little planning. List your must-do items in a journal and do them one at a time. Multi-tasking may make you feel industrious but research shows again and again that we can focus better and stay more productive by tackling one task at a time.
Review and Refocus
When you find yourself struggling with staying focused, stop and take a minute to review what you’re doing. Why are you struggling? Are you still feeling sick or struggling with distraction? Once you know what’s causing you to lose focus, you can address it. That might mean that have to rethink your task list or try to break things down into manageable chunks. Remember, it’s perfectly okay to admit defeat and cutting yourself some slack if you’re feeling awful. In that case, do what you can, but don’t beat yourself up for not being at the top of your game.
You may not be as productive as you would on a day when you’re feeling awesome, but these tips will help you to move back toward productivity mode. You might even find that once you’ve taken that hardest first step, you’ll get your groove back and really find your focus again.