So, you are in the middle of your scientific research, and starting to realize that the stress level is getting to you. Are you finding it harder and harder to focus on your work? Feeling like you are stuck and no progress can be seen on the horizon? What you need is to reschedule your schedule, and make some room for the “ME time”.
We know how scientific research can get hard and how much stress, there’s involved in it, but pushing yourself over your limits will only result in more harm than good. So, if you want to make a breakthrough, yet keep your health and sanity intact, you need to follow the following advice.
1. Have a regular and healthy diet no matter what!
When dealing with scientific research, it’s your brain that suffers the most, but if the brain is suffering, so is the rest of the body. So, if you are not eating regularly and healthy, the levels of stress caused by your work, can only get higher if you are exposing yourself to malnutrition.
Working the entire day and ordering pizza or Chinese food in the evening is not even nearly enough, and you are not providing your body the needed nutrients. So, instead of waiting to wear yourself during the day and eat in the evening, you need to make a schedule for your eating. This includes at least 3 meals during the day (breakfast, lunch, and dinner), and a few snacks in the meantime.
Since you are more using your brain for your work, rather than your muscles, your diet needs to be brain stimulative. So, your diet needs to be filled with Brain Food, and that includes wholegrains, pumkpin seeds, nuts, oily fish, blueberries, blackcurrants, tomatoes, eggs, and sage.
By regularly eating these foods, not only that, you will provide your body with all the needed nutrients, but you will also feed the brain with everything it needs to stay sharp and productive. And remember, start the day with a powerful breakfast, medium lunch, and light dinner.
2. Sleep Regularly
Irregular sleeping pattern or sleeping 4 hours per night will not give you more time to be more productive. In fact, it will make you much less productive. You need to realize that having a regular sleeping pattern and sleeping at least 7 hours per night is essential for both your body and brain to rest and clear out the stress that had gotten built up during the day, and be ready for the following day.
You can’t allow yourself to sleep a few hours at night, and then take a short nap during the day, and think that you had enough sleep overall. It doesn’t work that way and a good night’s rest is irreplaceable. So, allow yourself to have the needed hours of sleep, or otherwise, you will burn yourself out and that won’t do good for your research at all.
3. Allow Yourself to Have Time for Yourself
If you are constantly thinking just about the work, and nothing else, you are just unnecessarily stressing yourself and overloading your brain. Again, this will just do more harm than good. So, what you need to do is allow yourself to clear your thoughts for a while, and think of something else than work for a change, or even think of nothing at all, which is really hard for scientists, yet possible.
You need some distractions from work if you want to be productive. You need to make breaks from work to get out and talk and think about something else than your research. Instead of having a quick coffee with your colleagues, scientists, just a few feet away from your lab, where you will talk about the research, take a slightly longer break and get in touch with your friends that are not scientists, and have a coffee or a drink. This way, you will allow yourself to forget about the research for a while, and allow your brain to “clear the cached memory”, and reduce the level of stress.
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Another very effective way of reducing the stress levels is a visit to a spa center… Do we really need to say more?? Long, relaxing massages, saunas, Turkish baths, hydro massages… Again, do you really need more convincing???
And, the most efficient way to get rid of the stress, yet the hardest one, is to start doing yoga and meditating. During yoga, beside stretching your muscles and relieving them of stress, you also breath in a special, deeper way, which makes you focus on breathing mostly, and that is a part of the meditation process. With meditation, you are clearing your mind of thoughts, which is probably the hardest thing you will ever do, and not everyone can completely achieve it. But, when you clear, or partially clear the brain of thoughts, you are erasing the negative thoughts and concerns, and “reboot” your brain, sort of speak. This will make you feel refreshed and ready to get back to work, and you only need to do this once a day, no longer than an hour.
To Wrap It Up
With meditation tip, we have reached the end of your today’s post. At the end, after reading everything we said, it is up to you to follow the tips we gave you, or to ignore them and keep burning yourself up. But, please keep in mind that you can only last a while with that type of lifestyle, and we are pretty sure that this is not your main goal. So, remember to eat regularly and healthily, sleep regularly, and allow yourself to get off work and have some time for yourself. Oh, one more thing in the end, when the work day is over, it is OVER and work stays at WORK. Before you go to bed, don’t check your research notes, don’t check the emails, watch a movie or read a book, and go to bed with a cleared mind, you will feel much more rested and energized in the morning.