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7 Easy Ways to Detox Your Brain to Supercharge Productivity

Do you love being quick-witted and sharp-minded? Do you want to stay at the top of your game for as long as possible? Yup! Who might not want that? Can a brain detox help?

In this fast-paced life with lots of technological advancements––your brain is often so loaded up with information.

When your mind gets cluttered, you experience all negative stuff like the following.

  • Stress
  • Fatigue
  • Lack of focus 
  • Mistakes 
  • Errors
  • Indecision
  • Health issues
  • Poor communication
  • Unhappiness

So what’s the way out? A thorough brain detox 

A complete brain detox could help remove all the brain toxins and increase your brain’s efficiency––so you work smarter accomplishing more work in a short period.

Are you interested to know more about how to detox your brain? Here are some easy to follow steps that you can put into practice and completely detoxify your mind. 

Sleep to clear your mind

Experts say when you sleep; your brain detoxifies itself removing toxins and other cellular waste materials––enhancing brain function. Detoxification takes place when you’re in a state of deep sleep.

There are two types of sleep, such as rapid eye movement and non-rapid eye movement.

During the REM, we tend to dream. But it’s during the non-REM that the brain gets the optimal environment to remove toxins. This toxin removal pathway is called the glymphatic system.

So how does this work?

First, the brain pathways get filled with the cerebrospinal fluid. This fluid collects waste such as toxins, proteins, and other waste products.

Then the brain flushes these products at different drainage sites where this garbage moves through your body and gets eliminated like the other waste. 

One crucial product removed from the brain is beta-amyloid, which plays a significant part in developing Alzheimer’s disease.

Do yourself a favor and shift checking your emails, social media, texts, and Netflix to day time. This practice helps you to develop a consistent sleeping schedule.

Spend time outdoors for a complete brain detox

Spend some quality time outdoors, even if you live in an urban setting. It might be a short walk in the park or spending some time on your balcony that’s filled with green plants. 

Though there may be work, to-do lists, and other demands on your time, make it a priority to spend some time with nature.

Stanford researchers have found that spending just 90 minutes walking in nature significantly reduces activity in the brain areas linked to depression.

 Other research studies show that the Japanese practice of forest bathing called the “shinrin-yoku,” that’s spending some time in nature, significantly reduces cortisol levels. Or, in simpler terms, reduces your anxiety levels.

Some of the creative ways to spend time outdoors include

  • A walk in the park
  • Plan a weekend gateway in nature
  • Meditate outside
  • Schedule your one on one meetings for a walk. This practice is famously known as “walks and talks.”

Avoid technology for a specified time

While you might feel that you can’t imagine a life without your cellphone, laptop, or other tech devices, research says that Technology can contribute to a lot of stress.

A digital detox will surely help you to refresh your mind. So what’s a digital detox? It’s a time frame that you stop using your tech devices such as computers, smartphones, television, tablets, and social media sites.

Experts say that tech use could lead to behavioral addiction that can lead to psychological, social, and physical problems.

Heavy tech use can lead to mental health concerns. A research study published in the journal Child Development found that heavy tech use increased ADHD and conduct disorder symptoms and increased the risk of mental health problems among adolescents. 

Another research study by the University of Pennsylvania found that too much social media use could reduce wellbeing. The results showed limiting social media use could decrease the symptoms of depression and loneliness. 

Here are some ideas to create tech-free boundaries

  • Avoid taking your phone while going for a walk.
  • Design a space in your house where electronics are not allowed
  • Disconnect from electronics half an hour before bedtime
  • Silence your notifications for two to a three-hour window every day

Meditate to detox your brain

Just as a clear space promotes harmony, a clear mind replaces anxious thoughts with peace, lucidity, and greater focus. A free mind is similar to a clean slate where you can control your thought processes and take control of your destiny.

So how do you meditate to clear your mind? Here’s a simple method of controlled breathing thought by Hello Sunday Morning psychological experts. Try it out.

Sit in a comfortable position, straighten your back, relax your shoulders and muscles. Take a deep breath in through your nose, and slowly breathe out through your mouth. Pucker your lips and breathe out twice as long as you breathe in. 

Next, using your diaphragm, take a few deep breaths. You can be sure that you’re using your diaphragm when your stomach moves in and out during breathing. 

Close your eyes and continue deep breathing until you feel relaxed. 

Here are some meditation tips that would be helpful to detox your brain.

  • Start small; even a 5-minute meditation is okay.
  • Prioritize a time of day
  • Get comfortable
  • Close your eyes
  • Choose a quiet place.
  • Relax
  • Don’t try too hard
  • Focus on your breath
  • Let go of all worries.

Journal or vent it out to clear your mind

Do you journal your thoughts? If not, it would be helpful if you start this practice today––as it could be an effective way to detox your brain.

There are so many benefits with journalling. It improves your self-awareness, reduces depression and anxiety symptoms, improves your memory power, enhances your sense of wellbeing, and boosts your mood and positive feelings.

Journalling requires no fancy stuff, just a pen, and a small book will suffice. Get a notebook and keep it in a private place. Any time you feel disturbed or confused, start writing anything and everything that comes to your mind. 

Release all your thoughts in the form of the written word, even if it doesn’t make sense. Once everything comes out, you’ll feel relieved that the burden has been removed.

Venting out can also help you to clear your mind. If you need to get something off your chest, go out for a walk with a friend or just talk over a cup of coffee. And unload all your confusions. 

You could take turns venting out. The whole point is not to find a solution to your problem but just unloading so you might feel free. Vent out all those thoughts that are cluttered up in your mind and have been bothering you. 

Imagine they all flew far, far away to some unknown galaxy. Then you’ll feel relieved. Take a few cleansing breaths and focus on your next activity. 

Exercise

A cluttered mind can cause stress, anxiety, depression, and what not? A short burst of exercise clears your mind and drains away all those negative feelings and helps to detox your brain.

Animal research studies say that exercise can have a significant effect on the waste disposal of the brain. The study results found mice that exercised by running on a wheel showed twice the glymphatic activity than mice that didn’t exercise. 

Regular exercise has a positive impact on ADHD, anxiety, and depression. Likewise, it helps to sharpen memory, relieves stress, helps you sleep better, and boosts your general mental wellbeing.

Getting started with exercise is easier than you think. When you’re clouded with anxious thoughts, you’ll find it challenging to achieve lofty exercise goals. So start small and plan workouts when your energy is at its highest.

If you’re feeling depressed or anxious, try a 15-minute dance workout or go out for a walk. Some fresh air and sunlight will cheer up your mood. Give importance to the activities you enjoy. It could be playing frisbee with your friend or dog or cycling to the grocery store.

Wear comfortable clothes while you exercise. If possible, find a setting that you feel calming and energizing. After completing a workout, reward yourself with a delicious smoothie, a hot bubble bath, or listen to your favorite music.

Exercise would become more enjoyable if you take a friend or a loved one along. It will not only motivate you, but the companionship can help you vent out your concerns and help detox your brain.

Let go to detox your brain

 Sometimes, emotional pain could cloud your thinking. Letting go of things is an effective way to feel happy and to detox your brain.

I agree that letting go is difficult–––but negative things will clutter your mind if you hold on to the past. A cluttered mind cannot think progressive thoughts. 

So how do you let go to detox your mind? Positive self-talk could be a valuable tool. Instead of saying, “I can’t believe this happened to me.” Frame your thoughts to say, “I’m lucky enough to find a new path in my life.”

Try to create a physical distance from the source; it may either be a person or a situation. Creating such a space helps you to let go simply because you’re not near it.

Choose to address the hurt. If you ever think about the person who caused you pain, bring yourself to the present, and list all the things you’re grateful for. 

Let go of the past and learn to live in the present when you feel that you’re slipping back, busy yourself with some favorite hobby. When you choose to live in the present, your hurt has little control over you.

Be gentle with yourself if you find it difficult to let go, have a good cry, and let your emotions flow, let it be anger, grief, disappointment, or sadness. Allow them to flow out of you. Sometimes you may need counseling, but it’s best to deal with it––instead of keeping all your emotions shut inside you.

Practice self-care and surround yourself with people who fill you up. Permit yourself to forgive the person that caused you emotional pain. So you could be free and emotionally healthy. 

Take away

Life is beautiful. Each day is a gift; to enjoy each day, you must be in a happy frame of mind. A brain detox does precisely that. 

If you feel you need to clear your mind–try these methods that we’ve discussed. Then you’ll be surprised to feel healthier, happier, energetic, efficient, and ready to face life. 

By Swarnambal John

I am Swarnambal John, a health and wellness blogger and a writer.