Clear Your Mind

We’re all guilty of daydreaming and absentmindedness from time to time. But while experts say spacing out is the brain’s default setting, cerebral vacations can take their toll. Snap out of mental fogs and regain focus to avoid the dangers of distraction.

* De-clutter chaos: A disorganized space can zap concentration. Clear your work area and simplify décor. Jot down the to-dos circulating through your head, then zero in on individual tasks. Even personal memorabilia and family photos can kidnap your thoughts, so remove them from areas that require focus — like your desk. Tidying up your physical world can help clear room upstairs.

* Activate interest: Boredom has a way of leading your mind astray during classes or meetings. Tackle it head-on with attention-triggering tricks. Commit to participating and interacting, whether you pose questions, engage in discussion, or simply take diligent notes. You’ll be more apt to stay alert if you invest yourself in the experience.

* Relocate physically: Sitting in front of a computer screen for hours on end is not only bad for your eyes and circulation, it’s unproductive. While your body remains inert your brain checks out, taking mental sharpness with it. Change your environment with a walk outside, a visit to the break room, even a quick trip to the water cooler — anything that removes you from the static setting that clouds clarity.

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