The alarm rings…you snooze it a few times before eventually dragging yourself out of the bed at the very last minute. You then stumble to the kitchen for your favourite pick me up: strong black coffee. There is absolutely no freaking way you can start the day without it!
You then hop into the shower, get ready , put a cute outfit on and fly out of the door for work!
On the way you grab a juice and your fav pastry for breaky and arrive at work motivated, ready to get shit done. Today is a big day, you have a huge deadline and you’re totally feeling that #bossgirl vibes.
Only that, after two hours, you’re starting to nod off and struggling to keep your eyes open, let alone focus. It’s 11am so you quickly dash to the coffee shop, grab another coffee to see you through the rest of the morning.
Come 3pm you are feeling the energy levels going down again and you need another pick me up… This time you opt for a sweet snack hoping to stay awake until the end of the work day.
You have no idea what it feels like anymore to have consistent energy levels. You feel constantly tired and have to rely on coffee, sugar to keep you awake and get you going? This is affecting your work, your productivity and you are really getting frustrated by it all!!
Here are 3 wellness habits that are getting in the way of your productivity:
Low quality sleep
Staying up late to finish working on a deadline is definitely something most of us do or have done in the past. If it happens on a one off or rarely, your body is less likely to feel the impact. But if it is a frequent occurrence then your mood and your productivity will definitely be impacted.
Poor quality sleep, low sleep or no sleep at all, means your body has not rested, your reflexes are not as strong, your focus is lower and that also means you have to rely on stimulants i.e caffeine, sugar to keep up with life. Before you know it you are trapped in the blood sugar up and down cycle.
Prioritising your sleep is key for your productivity. It is said that 7 to 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep a night is an adequate amount for a healthy lifestyle (ref). Studies show that sleep disturbances are linked to a 3-fold risk of impaired work performance, and a 5-fold risk of limited every day functions, including time management, mental demands and physical job demands (ref). Sleep deprivation has also shown to affect endurance performance and motivation in athletes (ref).
Eating foods that make your brain foggy
A study in 2016 has shown a direct correlation between the state of our gut and the one of our brains, known as the gut-brain axis. The way this works is via our gut bacteria.
Gut bacteria directly alters our neurotransmitters in the brain, including serotonin and adrenaline (ref). Our gut bacteria can be manipulated by drugs, illness, infection and diet so we need a good, diverse gut microbiome in order for our brains to function optimally (ref).
Meals high in sugar, fat, heavily processed, tough to digest will slow down your digestion, increase the toxic load on the liver and reduce your ability to stay alert and focussed. That 3pm food coma ;-)…. Yep that. Fine in the weekend and during christmas when you’re off but harder in the week when you need to get stuff done at work. Focus on food that increases your energy and focus: complex carbs, healthy fats, good quality protein. Make sure your first meal is a GOOD ONE and has carbs, protein and fat. This is the meal your body and brain will be relying on to get shit done 😉
Optimise your gut microbiome with probiotic foods, such as sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir.
Not enough brain loving foods.
Increase your brain loving foods:
- Leafy green vegetables
- Oily fish, nuts and seeds for their omega three component which is key to brain cells functions and communication
- Monounsaturated fats such avocados,
- Antioxidants rich foods: berries, vegetables, cacao….
Load on these, keep snacking at minimum, drink tons of water and avoid relying on stimulants to stay alert. Your body is powerful and intelligent. Give it the resources to do its job.