“Research has suggested that processing speed — the ability to take in information quickly and efficiently — is impaired in individuals who are depressed,” explains Natascha Santos, PsyD.
Do you easily forget things that you need to do? Are you having a difficult time remembering the name of the person that you meet unexpectedly in public places? Is it hard to remind yourself of the essential details about your business or personal transactions? If you answered yes to all these questions, then it is best to read the rest of this article. In this write-up, we are going to enumerate some of the smart techniques that you can follow to increase your memory.
German psychologist Georg Elias Muller and his student Alfons Pilzecker suggested that “our memory for new information is especially fragile just after it has first been encoded, making it more susceptible to interference from new information.”
At this point, it is vital to emphasize the fact that the positive effects of the methods mentioned above will probably take time before they become manifest. As such, you need to be more patient in practicing them before you can notice the results. Here is the list of effective ways on how to improve your memory:
This vital step may shock you especially when many people believe that being physically active has nothing to do with improving one’s intelligence. Unfortunately, this is a common misconception because the truth of the matter is that exercise can improve any person’s memory. Take note that when you engage in these activities, your mind becomes active too. As a result, it will be easier on your part to recall stuff stored in your brain’s memory system.
Get Enough Sleep
Set a specific bedtime schedule that you must strictly follow every single day. Take note that you are not getting any younger, which is why you must rest early if you can. Sleep is a critical factor that can affect your memory in a good way. Remember that you need to relax too by getting a sufficient amount of rest and sleep in a day. At the same time, you must also get up at the same time every morning until your body gets used to it.
Have Fun With Friends
You cannot deny the fact that you are also a friendly person who needs to connect with other like-minded individuals. You need to make friends with others because having stable and happy relationships can positively affect the brain. Keep in mind that the connections that you build with others can stimulate your brain. As such, it is proper to conclude that establishing good relationships with others can also improve your cognitive functions.
Avoid Stress At All Times
Keep in mind that feeling anxiety at times may be considered as typical, especially if you are swamped with duties and obligations wherever you go. However, make sure never to allow these negative emotions bring you down. The more you think about stressful things, circumstances or people, the more your brain will encounter problems. A recent study revealed that stress could lead to memory loss.
“When we learn, we often forget to try and make associations until later on. However, research has shown that memory can be stronger when you try and make the associations when you first take in the information. For instance, think about how two things are related, and the memory for both will be enhanced. Connect new information to existing information or experiences in your mind,” says John M. Grohol, Psy.D.
Do not easily give up when it comes to improving your memory. You need to see to it that you follow the tips and tricks mentioned above. Remember that the results will vary depending on the attending circumstances of each case. Everything will be worth it.
Dr. Robert Myers, a certified psychologist, develops a series of exercises that can help stimulate the brain functions of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD. These are activities presented as a game that both kids and parents can enjoy together. It promotes kids’ awareness and improves their concentration. Psychologist Jeffrey M. Halperin, Ph.D., and his colleagues say that they have gathered evidence to show that “a program focused on playing nursery games helps young children improve a range of “executive functions,” including working memory and self-control.” Let’s take a look at those fun brain exercises and understand how it helps children with ADHD.
A lot of people are under the impression that therapy is for the weak, which couldn’t be far from reality. However, people who are thriving in their field do not feel alarmed by the thought of therapy. In fact, the majority of successful people are embracing and respecting the entire process as if their lives depended on it.
Talk therapy is a vital instrument that conceives success. People who utilize the therapy’s advantages are smart enough to know that psychotherapy is something that everybody should take into consideration at least once in their lives.
Ellen Hendriksen, PhD explains that “Seeking help from a psychologist, psychiatrist, or other counselor can be a great way to get through a rough patch, get some perspective, or optimize your life. But not everyone feels comfortable taking that step.”
Why Talk Therapy Matters
When it comes down to discussing internal baggage, a lot of people grew up sweeping those emotions under the rug – that it’s not appropriate to discuss feelings with other people, especially with strangers. But times are changing and not talking about something that’s continually bothering you is the single worst mistake that you can do against yourself.
Suppressing emotion and not therapeutically working through your mental and emotional issues, especially abuse or trauma experienced in the past, may culminate in a wide array of debilitating problems. Depression and anxiety are significant players in the world of illnesses and are considered the leading causes of global mental disability.
Benefits Gained From Talk Therapy
Talk therapy is a wonderfully structured type of psychotherapy that addresses not only the major symptoms of specific mental illnesses (like depression) but also the cause of the problem. “Many people function well with depression in front of others. It’s when they start their day, end their day, or isolate themselves from others that the symptoms are obvious,” according to a statement by Susan Fletcher, PhD. While medications such as antidepressants are essential to managing most of the symptoms, it does not rip out the underlying source. That said, here are a couple more benefits that are gained from engaging in talk therapy.
- Talk therapy provides techniques for dealing with unexpected occurrences. Life is full of endless curve balls that may just hit us in the face any minute; therefore, knowing how to manage these problems, whether big or small, is an essential skill to live a healthy life.
- Talk therapy’s effects prevail even after the sessions are over. Long-lasting outcomes are possible because, in this type of psychotherapy, you not only work through your baggage but also learn and develop helpful tools in dealing with unexpected circumstances in the future. The durability of the program is continuous, making the person more tenacious and mature in dealing with life crises.
- Talk therapy lets you acquire a different perspective not only on yourself and your situation but other people’s plights as well. Understanding the people surrounding you is essential to bringing down negative assumptions about them, doing a reality check and seeing the person in an entirely different light. Without the disarray of one’s hunches, recognizing, accepting, and appreciating people’s motivations and intentions becomes way easier.
- Talk therapy rewires the brain to a certain degree that can entirely change one’s control over his or her emotions. Medication can improve part of the brain that’s depressed; however, research shows that psychotherapy is more potent in this area. According to evidence, talk therapy can alter mental activity where self-referential imagery, fear, and command occur.
- Talk therapy replaces self-medication in dealing with psychological disruptions. Though self-medication is strangely common, it does not hammer away the real issue and instead, just masks it. Furthermore, mental illness medications have an addictive effect that may exacerbate the underlying problem. Talk therapy is keen on getting straight to the point and obviating the necessity to self-medicate.
With the advent of numerous therapies, people are starting to consider the advantages of talk therapy in dealing with mental health problems and personal struggles in life. Though the stigma is slowly fading, there is still work to be done in the aspect of promoting talk therapy as a crucial tool in facing life’s daily encounters.
Also, keep these things in mind: “Feel free to ask questions in your search for a therapist. Common questions tend to be about therapeutic style, therapist experience, average length of treatment, fees for services, insurance participation, and scheduling details. Many therapists have websites that address many common questions, but make sure to ask any outstanding questions if you are unclear,” a reminder from Alicia Clark, PsyD.
There’s always that one person or group of persons who will make your work life a living nightmare. “While we assume that most people follow the golden rule of “treat others the way that you would like to be treated”, there are definitely some individuals who are not guided by this principle and regularly break this rule”, says Dr Damon Ashworth, a Clinical Psychologist. One of the main things that my psychiatrist have taught me when dealing with toxic people at work is that one must first get to know how they’ve turned out to be impossible to get along with.
Not only that, there are a couple of things that my psychiatrist has revealed to me that made me change my perception towards my co-workers.
Here are the things that I learned which made a lot of sense:
- They Might Not Mean It
Sometimes, we are so caught up in all the negative things about our insufferable co-workers that every mistake or comment gets magnified, intensified, and overanalyzed. Individuals are called as such because we are composed of different personalities – what you’re used to might not be the same with your co-worker. People don’t wake up and instantaneously put your name on top of their “Today’s To Piss Off List.”
One must admit, we are not always bright and sunny and we can be the problematic person for someone inside the office on any given day. You have to face the fact that people experience bad days and weeks and dumping that frustration towards colleagues is an insanely normal thing to do. We just can’t help our outburst, especially those who don’t have proper coping mechanisms for stress and pressure. Psychotherapist Amy Morin, pointed out “that toxic people can take “a serious toll on your mental well-being”.
Intentions of people vary and most certainly, their life goal is not to irritate you or be upsetting. Often, these troublesome people are also victims of their storms.
- Calming Ourselves Will Not Enable The Nuisance
Heated arguments with toxic people can happen, especially if you’ve just reached your maximum tolerance. There are only two outcomes from this: you’re like adding gasoline to fire or shutting the other person down entirely. However, challenging people, much like bullies, are often prepared for comebacks.
Keeping your cool can make a lot of difference. “Maintaining an emotional distance requires awareness” said Travis Bradberry, Ph.D. Though it is easier said than done, miscommunication often intensifies if you act on the aggressor with a raging disposition. So, giving yourself time to breathe and relax before making a reply is a valid rebuttal to a frustrating co-worker. It keeps your emotions at bay and disables any impending work-related problems.
- Understanding People Can Go A Long Way
Misunderstandings are one of the leading causes of work-related drama. Though it is challenging to see eye-to-eye, you can turn things around by trying to understand a particular topic from the person’s point-of-view. By doing so, you are developing an emphatic attitude that will not only make you further figure out why the person is acting out a certain way, but will also make you feel better.
Empathy for a person’s inner struggles can benefit one’s perception and maturity. On the plus side, being empathetic creates more manageable working relationships.
If you have someone inside the office that’s making your work life miserable, acknowledgment of their behavior does not mean immediate acceptance. Boundaries or limitations must be established; otherwise, consequences must be initiated. Remember that in workplaces, there are specific departments and individuals whose primary responsibility is to handle problematic people. If your capacity to deal or handle toxic people has already been depleted, you can always seek help, especially if the problem is affecting your work and well-being.
When people learned that you are working from home, the first thing that comes to their minds is, “Lucky for you. You can just lie around and still get paid.” They thought home-based workers have all the luxury of time to play around and just work a little.
Yes, there are many perks to working from home, like taking breaks when you want or need to, just work in your pajamas, no need to travel for hours or get caught in the traffic. But like any other job, there is also a downside to it. Working from home is not always a bed of roses.
“Employees often find themselves struggling to balance workplace demands with a desire to maintain strong relationships or ensure quality family time. That struggle can be emotionally draining and – if allowed to fester without intervention – can lead to more serious mental and/or physical concerns,” explains Nels Magelssen, PsyD, PS.
Distractions Kill Work-Life Balance
Managing time is the hardest part of being a work-at-home employee because there are more distractions at home than in an office setting. There is no boss to call your attention to get you back on track. If other things eat up your time, your productivity and the quality of your work will suffer. You may end up spending more time in front of your laptop than you are supposed to, sacrificing time for yourself.
Self-Discipline Combined with Time Management Results in Work-Life Balance
If you wanted to be a home-based worker, you should be ready to have discipline and determination. Working from home is more comfortable as you have flexible working hours, but you need to have strict rules when it comes to time management. Just watch out for issues like stress and anxiety because “working remotely creates a unique pressure to appear busy,” said Jane Scudder, a certified personal development and career transition coach.
It’s important to establish and maintain a work-life balance when you work from home in order to be creative and productive. If putting balance in your work and life is neglected, you may lose mental agility, and you will get tired of the everyday monotony. To prevent this from happening, the following techniques are truly worth trying,
- Be in control of your time. It’s your first guard against imbalance. List your tasks for the day and prioritize. You will then have an idea of what and how much works need to be accomplished. Read more time management tips here: www.mom365.com.
- Create a system. This will allow you to manage your tasks well and meet your deadlines with less stress. Finishing on time means you’ll have some spare time to do your stuff.
- Have an exclusive workspace. It may be the corner of your room, a nook, or a spare room, any space that is comfortable for you to do your work. Put boundaries, letting your household members know that this is your workplace. Fewer distractions more output.
- Leave your office. When you’re done with the day’s work, leave your work area. Maintaining the division between your work area and the rest of the house is a way to put balance in your work and personal life. Take a break, go for a walk, have a coffee break.
- Disconnect and Reconnect. Learn to disconnect from your social network and other things that may distract you when you are in work mode. Failure to doing so will result in poor quality of work, low productivity, and finishing late.
When you’re done, disconnect from your work mode and reconnect to the real world. Have a chat with family. Go out with friends. This is the time to enjoy a social life.
Work-Life Balance is Happiness
Happiness, satisfaction, and effectivity of working at home will depend on how well you manage your time. Developing the habits of proper time and task management, putting boundaries on your workspace and the rest of your home, and learning how to disconnect and reconnect will make you most effective even without your boss peeping behind your shoulder now and then. Having a healthy work-life balance will allow you to enjoy the full benefits of working from home.
“Now, I block time off on my work schedule for family time, self-care and also try to be realistic and generous with regard to how much time I will spend traveling or preparing for meeting, sessions or consultations. Building in an extra 10 or 15 minutes to catch up or ensure I have time to eat lunch without rushing also goes a long way. I’ve made changes in my schedule to work from home several days a week to spend mornings and afternoons with my kids because they grow up so fast,” a reminder from Stephanie O’Leary, Psy.D. who also works from home a few days a week.
Sometimes we do things unconsciously, and this often leaves us with not so good results. It’s like eating chocolates unconsciously, telling yourself, “just this once.” Every time, that’s what we say to ourselves, not noticing the calories, sugar, and fat building up in your body. Finally, one day you wake up and look in the mirror, and alas – you’re now a chubbo.
The same goes for work. Sometimes, unconsciously we do things that we don’t realize disrupts our productivity. “People check their phones every 15 minutes or less, even if they don’t have any alerts or notifications,” according to psychologist Larry Rosen. We become so occupied and enjoy those outside forces too much that it eventually becomes a habit – a habit that pulls our productivity trajectory down.
Skipping breakfast is not a good idea, but that’s what most of us are doing. Breakfast fuels our body to perform its work correctly. Omitting it will mean getting tired quickly and might even make us dizzy, making us less productive.
Eating meals right at your desk makes you less creative and may leave your work area a mess. Use lunch breaks as an opportunity to socialize and network. It’s more rejuvenating than eating alone.
Saying Yes to More Tasks
Being pressured with so much to do keeps you out of balance, both at work and your private life. Taking on more than you can handle hinders your happiness, creativity, and productivity.
It’s easy to look like you’re listening, but how much of it do you actually understand and how much is retained? Listening is a skill one must develop, especially listening during a meeting. Time is wasted and so is your productivity compromised when you miss some critical instructions. The tendency is to go back again and re-do things over again.
Not Asking For Help
Don’t try to be a know-it-all person. Ask when you’re not sure. Collaborate with your co-workers. And sometimes, it’s okay to ask for help when it’s impossible to meet a deadline. Always bear in mind that two heads are better than one.
Turn off your social media when not necessary. Sometimes just a peek gets you hooked, not noticing it already snatched your time away.
Notifications and Emails
Browse notifications and emails during breaks. Check which ones need an immediate reply and which ones can wait for later. Being stuck on those emails and notifications will really hurt your productivity and will delay your work which is stressing.
Phone calls are best at distracting you at your most creative moment, and after a call, it’s difficult to refocus. Put your phone in silent mode when working or better put it away when you’re not expecting important calls. For emergency calls, you can instruct your family to use the landline so the secretary can inform you that you got an emergency call.
According to Kendra Cherry MS, a psychosocial rehabilitation specialist, “In the past, many people believed that multitasking was a good way to increase productivity.” Not all are effective when they multi-task. In fact, most become less productive and more stressed. Avoiding multitasking is hard to do, but it can be done and swiping through your phone or browsing the net while doing your work or while on a meeting if not necessary so you can focus. Practice focusing on one task at a time until it becomes a habit you develop.
Things you do unconsciously can develop a habit that can become a thief that will snatch your productivity. It may seem pleasurable at present but will it will definitely hurt your efficiency and leave you stressed in the long run. Have the courage to break these habits now and work on a well-balanced and prosperous life.
“Goal-setting in psychology is an essential tool for self-motivation and self-drivenness – both at personal and professional levels,” a parting note from Madhuleena Roy Chowdhury, BA, certified psychiatric counsellor.
You’ve planned things well for your career and your family life. Now, it’s time to check the reality of what’s happening in your workplace and your private life. As what Shawn M. Burn Ph.D. said, “Work-life balance is important because it affects the well-being of individuals, families, and communities.” Think which part of your plan is doable and which part of it needs change. How hard is it really to achieve work-life balance in your situation now, from your workplace to your house roles?
Time To Check The Happening Inside Your House
Life as a parent, single or not, demands many things. Children often will not understand why you have to always be at work. They may accept that you don’t have enough time for them because they have no choice, but deep inside them, they struggle. There are many questions in their mind, like why you don’t have time for them.
Time To Check On Your Life On A Loop
Are you living like a robot – working hard for years where everything has been the same. Waking up each morning doing the same routines, prepare the children, prepare to go to work, work, come home, prepare the kids for bed, still do some chores while kids are asleep before you can rest yourself. Then same thing again tomorrow. Is this really what you’re meant to do?
Time To Check Your Workplace
Walking in and out of that office door several days in a week, and sitting on that same chair, browsing tons of paper works. You can hardly take the afternoon off or leave the job early for your child’s school activity, and now you’re taking on more responsibility. Is this your career goal? Organizational psychologist Jeffry Pfeffer of Stanford University argues “many organizations and corporations are so focused on profits and other efficiency indicators that they ignore workplace stress and provide insufficient vacation and sick days.”
Time To Check On Yourself
As a mother and a wife, you are obliged to take care of your partners and your children, but how about yourself? Can you still take more? Have you achieved what you have been aiming for? Is this what you really want for your life? Or is it time to make changes? “Non-procrastinators focus on the task that needs to be done,” explained Joseph Ferrari Ph.D.
Changes Will Happen One Step At A Time
Check, analyze, and see what changes are needed to be done to improve and put balance in your career and family life. Making changes is hard because routines and mindset should be broken. It means making sacrifices. It will never be easy, but if you will think of it as making compromises and prioritizing, it is doable.
Time To Instill Values in Your Kids
Home is where your heart always is. But the heart is not enough. The mind should also be present. Training your kids, giving each one responsibility, and keeping them involved will make them understand. Make house chores a time to bond. This will make house works easier for you and will give you more time to be with them and enjoy time together.
Time To Speak – Your Voice Matters
Having a voice in your workplace would be great. We are in the modern world now where though equality is still a big issue; you have the freedom to voice out your right and the freedom to choose how you want to be treated. All of us have responsibilities to take on, but taking on more than you can handle and not saying a word about it is sometimes the problem. Nothing will change in your present situation if you will not do anything about it.
Time To Leave Your Comfort Zone One Step At A Time
The reality is, making changes is never easy. It will mean coming out of your comfort zone. But if you will not take action, how will things change? How will your situation change? Reality check is not just checking on what’s wrong, but realizing that it’s about time to do something. You need to change some things for the benefit of your household, for the benefit of your workplace, and for your own.
As mentioned also in Family Very Well, balance in life is hard to achieve, but it’s the balance that will bring happiness and satisfaction. The happier you are with your life, the more comfortable your family will be. The happier you are in your workplace, the more productive, creative, and accomplished you will.
Do you find it difficult to find the perfect balance between work and your personal life? As what Shawn M. Burn Ph.D. said, “Work-life balance is important because it affects the well-being of individuals, families, and communities.” Is it a complete struggle to advance in your career without sacrificing your health or happiness? If yes, check out the list below for the top five things to do to achieve the right amount of work-life balance.
- Learn how to say no. “Non-procrastinators focus on the task that needs to be done,” explained Joseph Ferrari Ph.D. Do not make yourself available 24/7 to your boss or team leader. Take note that you can remain a productive and efficient employee without doing overtime every night. Make sure to complete all tasks or errands within the working hours. When the clock strikes at five, it is a clear indication that the work for the day is over. Hence, when the boss asks you to do something after the 5 PM, learn how to say no politely. There is no need to feel sorry for it or to justify your actions.
Being busy the whole day doesn’t mean you’ve become productive at all. Many times, we hear people complaining about how very little time there is when there are so many things that need to be accomplished. But do you believe you can accomplish many things with your time and still have spare time to do other fun stuff? It’s called time management. Melanie Greenberg Ph.D. says that “The key is to take control of your time, rather than letting time control you. One study found that people who were under time pressure and felt they had control over their time reported greater life satisfaction, felt less overloaded, and had less tension than those who were equally busy, but felt they had little or no control over their time.”