5 Ways to Improve Focus and Memory Naturally

by Erica Garza

With endless digital distractions and jam-packed work and social schedules, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and end up in a brain fog. If you’re looking for ways to bounce back with the razor-sharp focus of a tightrope walker, there are some simple ways to do it. From CBD and adaptogens to meditation and sufficient sleep, here’s how to increase energy and motivation and stay focused at work without having to audition for Cirque du Soleil.  

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1. Meditate Like a Pro

    Taking time to meditate has been linked to higher cognitive functioning. In a study led by the University of California at Santa Barbara, researchers found that students who did around an hour of “mindfulness training” for eight days subsequently did better on the GRE as well as tests of working memory and mind-wandering. New to meditation? Using a meditation app is an easy way to start improving your memory and attention.

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    2. Aim to Sleep 8.5 Hours

      If you spend most of your night counting sheep or worrying about your to-do list, you’re likely not getting enough sleep, which plays a crucial role in memory consolidation, a process in which short-term memories are transformed into long-lasting ones. Daniel Gartenberg, a sleep scientist and adjunct professor in biobehavioral health at Penn State, told QZ that 8.5 hours of sleep is the new eight hours. “The standard in the literature is that healthy sleepers spend more than 90 percent of the time in bed asleep, so if you’re in bed for eight hours, a healthy sleeper might actually sleep for only about 7.2 hours.” 

      To ensure you’re getting your rest, practice good sleep hygiene like powering down screens before you get into bed, avoiding caffeine several hours before bed and making sure your room is cool and dark. Supplements can also help aid healthier sleep. FOCL Night combines full-spectrum hemp CBD with sleep-friendly botanicals like Ashwagandha and Valerian Root to help you sleep deeply all night long. 

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      3. Eat Brain-Boosting Foods

        The foods you eat also play a role in keeping your brain healthy and energized. Fatty fish like salmon and sardines are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are major building blocks in the brain. Other brain-boosting foods that have been linked to improving memory and concentration are blueberries, dark chocolate and beets

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        4. Remain a Student (or Gamer) for Life

          Keep your brain fit and healthy by consistently presenting it with challenges. Whether you choose to take a class or complete a crossword, exercising your cognitive skills trains your brain in the same way you train your body at the gym. By taking on a lifelong student mind-set, your brain will continue to make new connections, giving you the focus and stamina to power through even the most challenging days. 

          how to increase energy and motivation challenge yourself

          5. Take CBD & Adaptogens

            While hemp-derived CBD does not have psychoactive effects, meaning it won’t get you high, it does affect brain function in a number of ways. From decreasing anxiety to supporting mental clarity, CBD has been shown to help people focus.  When you combine CBD with powerful adaptogens and botanicals, your brain receives even more fuel to be at its best. But it may be tiring to take so many supplements or vitamins to boost energy. Luckily, with a wellness stack like FOCL Day, you get the benefits of CBD and 100% plant-based adaptogens to increase focus and motivation in a single daily dose. Along with full-spectrum CBD, the supplement stack contains Lion’s Mane mushroom, Rhodiola root, L-Theanine, vitamin B6 and Bacopa monnieri — ingredients to amp up your brain power. 

            Erica Garza is an author and essayist. Her work has appeared in TIME, Health, Glamour, Good Housekeeping, Women's Health, The Telegraph and VICE. She lives in Los Angeles.