At one point or the other in life, we will all probably experience mental fatigue. For some, it may be more frequent than others. It could be because of work, school, or any other activities that involve prolonged cognitive activity.
Some common symptoms of mental fatigue include mental blocks, lack of motivation, irritability, stress eating or loss of appetite, and insomnia. It’s important that you deal with mental fatigue as soon as possible before it develops into something serious. Here are 7 ways to overcome mental fatigue.
1. Stay organised
What needs to be done today, must be done today. What happens when you procrastinate is that you end up with a million tasks to be completed in a short time frame. You end up with a mess and a pile of things that you may not need. Stay on top of things.
Getting rid of all non-essential stuff is crucial to stay focused, motivated and productive. The best way to keep things organized without feeling overwhelmed is to assign a proper place to everything and clear up the mess right after you’ve finished a task.
2. Eat foods that fuel your brain
There are certain foods that help in the development and functioning of your brain. If you want to stay on top of things, you need to eat foods that are good for the organ. If you want to keep your mind at peak performance, eliminate refined sugars and heavily processed foods from your diet. Limit caffeine. When you eat, focus on proteins and snack wisely. Avoid candy bars or chips in favour of nuts (such as almonds), fruits, and whole grains. Lifestyle: The Benefits Of Nuts And The Most Nutritious Ones To Eat
Additionally, drink lots of water. Aside from the headaches, it can create, dehydration impacts your ability to think, reason, and process information.
3. Practice self-care
Mental fatigue is often a result of neglecting important practices like rest and sleep. But over and above, find ways to take care of yourself and nourish your soul. It could be through treating yourself to a massage or even a well-cooked meal. Start practising self-care, no matter how self-indulgent it sounds. Do at least one thing every day that makes you feel genuinely happy.
Meditating is an extremely powerful practice. Silence opens up your mind to a world of possibilities. Studies show that meditation not only improves focus and memory but also changes the way your body responds to stress. Meditation may help alleviate pain, fatigue, and depression, and slow cognitive decline.
“There is sound evidence that meditating for as little as 20 to 30 minutes a day can alter the brain’s function and structure in a positive way, decreasing pain, improving focus and memory, improving mood, and even influencing the effects of ageing on the brain,” says Nicolas Cherbuin, PhD, director of the neuroimaging and brain lab at the Australian National University in Canberra.
5. Be realistic with yourself
Mental fatigue may be a result of heaping too many tasks on your desk every day. You can only take so much in a day. You need to tend to yourself. Spread out your tasks through the day, week, or month, and schedule time for resting as well. Keep your to-do list simple and realistic. This will keep you from overcommitting, ensuring you’ve enough time to check off all the items on that list. Similarly, set realistic personal and professional goals.
6. Batch tasks together
“Do repetitive tasks in bulk so you don’t have to do them often,” says Dr. Boyes, who is the author of The Healthy Mind Toolkit and The Anxiety Toolkit. If it’s work-related, then you can batch certain tasks that are similar and that require the same amount of concentration together. When you’re done, move to the next. This, again, keeps you organised throughout the day, which can help you to overcome mental fatigue.
7. Rethink the way you expend your energy
How do you spend your weekend? Do you spend it away from home, from Friday to Sunday, or do you take time to rest? “Move from being the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff to working on systems that will help permanently reduce stress and excess decision making,” says Dr. Boyes, the author of The Healthy Mind Toolkit and The Anxiety Toolkit.
Spend your energy on high-value activities like reading books (and not Facebook), learning a new skill, or doing hobbies and tasks that enrich you. Find activities and socialize with individuals that will improve your quality of life.