For anybody experiencing brain fog or mental exhaustion, improving mental clarity is a must because it will help you to eliminate strained thoughts, poor mood, and lack of energy.
Without clarity of mind, it can be easy to start a damaging cycle of unhealthy habits and low well-being.
This article includes the best methods for reducing mental fogginess and clearing away the cobwebs. As a result, you will feel much better and be able to think clearly again.
- What is Mental Clarity?
- Recognizing Lacking Mental Clarity
- Causes Of Poor Mental Clarity
- 6 Tips On How To Achieve Mental Clarity
What is Mental Clarity?
Mental clarity refers to a mental state where thoughts can flow rapidly, information is processed quickly, and it is easy to understand and organize ideas.
It is often associated with high energy levels but does not necessarily involve more elevated energetic feelings. This concept is often contrasted with brain fog, which primarily refers to difficulty focusing and poor performance.
Still, it is also connected with trouble concerning memory loss, having time verbalizing ideas or following conversations, easy distractions, and inability to pay attention. This condition is a distressing component of burnout or prolonged stress.
With mental clarity, those problems do not manifest themselves, and you can stay focused and energetic with limited ups and downs. This allows for good brain activity and an optimal level of productivity that can help you get things done and enjoy your life.
Recognizing Lacking Mental Clarity
Knowing when you are having trouble with mental fog is the first step toward achieving mental clarity. It is natural to experience it periodically, but the problem needs to be addressed if passivity and brain fog occur regularly.
The easiest way to determine if you lack mental clarity or have brain fog is by examining when you cannot concentrate like you usually would be able to. This may mean that you get distracted easily or have to get up often to stay alert.
For example, if you can’t seem to put your thoughts down on paper or hold a social conversation with understanding and flow, then that is a sign that you lack the mental clarity you desire.
Another sign of recognizing foggy mental health is cognitive exhaustion and physical fatigue.
You may feel drained, exhausted, and like you cannot do things you are interested in or even things essential for your livelihood. This can also coincide with a lack of interest or low motivation that causes you to feel unfulfilled.
Finally, cognitive faculties may not be up to par. You may have a hard time remembering information, learning, or processing data into retrievable memories.
You may experience memory difficulties in the long term. In fact, you may even find that you make more mistakes, cannot process information as fast, or cannot solve problems like you used to.
Causes Of Poor Mental Clarity
Some causes of mental clarity are apparent, but others are more subtle. Knowing what is causing your symptoms can help you achieve mental clarity by allowing you to see what you need to fix.
It is common for people not to get restful sleep, and doing so now and then is unlikely to cause severe issues beyond the day after. However, if you rarely get enough sleep, you can develop a chronic case of brain fog.
Anxiety and stress are bad for the body and impede a healthy mind. When we are stressed, we release more cortisol, which can impact circulation and contribute to brain fog.
Anxiety can also cause a distraction that can make it hard to focus and have a smooth flow of our thoughts and feelings.
Additionally, the way we take care of ourselves physically will also contribute to our mental clarity or fogginess.
For example, eating healthy foods and getting enough exercise are essential for our overall health and immune system and contribute to mental clarity.
Also, inflammation can lead to factors of brain fog like confusion, headaches, and struggle with rapid thinking.
In addition, other causes like medications and drugs or illness and disease, including anxiety and depression. If these types of causes are the case, it is best to speak with a doctor to see what they can do to improve your mental clarity.
It is important to note that Covid-19 infection can cause brain fog and related issues as well (1).
6 Tips On How To Achieve Mental Clarity
Now that you are aware of some of the most common causes of brain fog, you are ready to learn tips for how to improve mental clarity.
While some of them depend on the primary cause of the poor cognitive function, all of them can be beneficial but are most likely to work well when you try multiple methods at once.
1. Get Enough Quality Sleep
A good night’s sleep is underrated for many people or just a rarity they encounter once or twice a year.
That isn’t good because lack of sleep and rest can deteriorate many aspects of mental health and tax mental resources. However, here are tips for getting more hours of sleep that may help alleviate some of your fogginess.
First, try to go to bed and wake up at the exact times every single day, including weekends. This will help to get your circadian rhythm back on track.
Also, it would help to avoid caffeine in the afternoon and night because stimulants can make it harder to relax and fall asleep.
Keeping optimal bedroom conditions can go a long way as well. Since lower temperatures can encourage resting states, darkness can help release melatonin, which can help you sleep faster (2).
You can try a melatonin supplement or other natural sleep aid if necessary. Around bedtime, do things that promote relaxation and don’t stimulate the body or brain function.
For example, choose something like reading or taking a bath instead of an action movie or rigorous exercise. It can also be good to avoid digital screens before bed.
2. Reduce Your Stress
When stressed or anxious, we can give in to distractions and feel bogged down, therefore lacking mental clarity.
We will also improve mental clarity, brain health, and physical vitality by reducing stress. However, reducing stress is easier said than done.
It can be helpful to identify triggers for your anxiety. Then, you can address those triggers in the best possible way. Common stressors include health problems, work, finances, and relationships.
While some are easier to address than others, knowing your triggers can help you manage their reactions. It may require that you take an introspective look at how you spend money, your work-life balance, or the negative relationships in your life.
You can also try to keep a journal to help you organize stressful thoughts. A common type of journal is called a gratitude journal that will allow you to write down one or two things that you are grateful for each day, allowing you to change perspective.
3. Practice Mindfulness
Mindfulness can help manage stress, but it can also directly impact mental clarity and allow us to feel refreshed and motivated. It means staying in the present moment and not judging thoughts, perceptions, and sensations.
The result is a feeling of well-being that can help us stay focused, which contributes to energy and the completion of productive tasks.
First, try to take a break now and then throughout the day. During those breaks, try to encourage concentration on the present, calm thoughts, and success in your tasks.
This can help you feel positive, less overwhelmed and influence your mood. There is also significant evidence that meditation can help us be mindful and reduce anxiety, make better decisions, and promote mental clarity (3).
Try resting for 5 to 10 minutes each day and close your eyes to focus on breathing. Watch the inhales and exhales and use them to ground you. Then, when you see a thought pass, watch it without addressing or judging that thought.
Over time, you will find that the focus on the present and reducing brain fog will seep into every portion of your life.
You do not always have to meditate to get these benefits as long as you do meditation regularly and commit to spending time with it over more extended periods.
4. Exercise Regularly
Another way to promote mental clarity is with physical activity and fitness. There are several reasons why this is the case.
Exercising releases neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin, but it can also give more energy to combat mental fatigue (4). Plus, it can stimulate the nervous system and increase blood flow to the brain.
The result is increased concentration, performance, and a boost in mental clarity. Still, sometimes it can be hard to get in the habit of participating in physical fitness daily because it takes too much time.
One easy way to get more exercise is to do some simple fitness routines throughout the day like stretches, walks around the office, or even jumping jacks and push-ups.
This type of fitness also gives your brain a much-needed break to help you focus when you return to work. However, it can also be good to do some heavier routines even if you don’t want to go to the gym or do traditional weight training.
You can get tons of exercise while also having fun by playing sports or games, so it never feels like a chore. One other method that offers both fitness and meditation is yoga.
Yoga can be more physical than many people realize and alleviate stress to address multiple tasks on this list at once.
5. Maintain a Healthy Diet
Did you know that the food you eat can positively impact your mental health and wellness, including mental clarity or fogginess in the brain?
Science research also shows that good nutrition can improve concentration and allow the brain to function correctly. In contrast, poor nutrition can worsen brain fog, stress, and other negative effects (5).
Things like too much sugar, processed foods, high caffeine intake, or use of other central nervous system stimulants can also cause cobwebs to form in the brain.
On the other hand, eating healthy foods like whole grains, lean protein, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats can help your brain health stay mentally productive and precise.
Some of the vitamins that hold the highest importance are Vitamin B12, Vitamin C, vitamin D, Iron, Zinc, and lycopene.
Omega-3 fatty acids are also critical and are known as brain foods that can help to promote mental clarity. These essential oils and healthy fats are found in avocados, fatty fish like salmon or sardines, and olive oil.
If you are having difficulty getting enough of these nutrients from what you eat, you can also take nutritional supplements to support your diet with missing minerals.
For example, vitamin B12 supplements are pretty standard and often include other essential nutrients for mental clarity.
6. Nootropic Supplements
Another option is to take nootropics, supplements that offer improved cognition, lessened stress, boosted focus, reduced brain fog, and improved memory.
This can be very helpful, but there are many to choose from since some nootropics stimulate and fight low energy. In contrast, others can efficiently create a better feeling of cognition by influencing neurotransmitters and other chemicals in the brain.
For example, adaptogens like Lion’s Mane Mushroom are backed by science, offer nootropic effects, and are known for slowing inflammation that can hinder mental clarity.
Other herbs like Ginkgo, Bacopa, and Lemon Balm are good for memory, help you concentrate, and allow overall cognitive maintenance.
L-theanine is another popular choice to support mental clarity because it offers a balance of reduced stress and cognitive benefits. Research shows that it can help you feel less overwhelmed and make concentrating easier (6).
Many options exist that can help with your ability to maintain a feeling of mental clarity, but a lot of people find that they work best when combined in a stack.
Many supplement formulas can create a feeling of positivity, support and maintain readily flowing thoughts, and affect fogginess and state of mind without much risk.
Mental clarity helps with the ability to think clearly and can affect your well-being. But unfortunately, a lot of people still struggle with frustrating brain fog.
The good thing is that there are many tips to improve the condition like diet, taking care of your body, and engaging in daily activities that encourage less stress like mindfulness techniques.
Nootropics can also be highly beneficial and can target many of the causes and concerns associated with the brain fog struggle.
For example, the right ones can give energy, help with the process of information and the flow of memories, or help fight stress. The result is a profound difference in clarity and well-being.