Beta Brainwaves and Deliberate Recharging
Last week we introduced beta brainwaves, the brainwaves that occur when we are in a state of deep focus and sustained concentration. Learning how to unlock beta brainwaves and enter into focused execution allows us to accomplish more, decrease stress, and direct our attention towards what is important. However, the periods in between these deep focus states are just as important.
When we are in a state of deep focus, we are expending huge amounts of mental and physical energy. If we don’t give ourselves time to recover, we end up tired, stressed, sick, and unable to reach our potential. Therefore, we need to alternate between periods of deep focus with periods of rest to recharge our bodies and minds in order to perform at our best. A simple formula to remember is: stress + rest = growth. Without adequate rest, we are neglecting a critical piece of the equation. A commitment to rest and recovery sets us up to deliver results when it matters.
Keep in mind that we need to be deliberate about our rest time to make sure that it’s healthy and setting us up properly for the next intense work period. Deliberately recharging is taking the time to do something that will boost your health and productivity, such as a quick walk, meditation, grabbing a healthy snack, or maybe even taking a 20-minute power nap. Anything that gives your body and brain a reset so you can re-enter into beta brainwave mode.
There are times when we need to immerse ourselves fully to get a task done. However, we can’t stay in an alert activated state at all times. We will damage our minds and bodies, and become overworked, exhausted, and chronically stressed. Remember that while acute stress is a good thing, being chronically stressed is damaging to our health and can lead to burnout. Recharging your energy helps you to live life to your potential consistently over time without getting burned out and exhausted.
The key to a sustained high-performing life and good health is knowing when to be radically attentive, and when to deliberately recharge. Both are critical to take your life to the next level. And like entering into beta brainwave deep focus mode, learning how to deliberately recharge just takes practice.
If you want to dive deeper into the science of brainwave states, check out my book Rest Refocus Recharge: A Guide for Optimizing your Life.
What are we finding in the research?
In 2018, a group or researchers aimed to determine how to improve recovery of workers during their midday breaks. Participants were split into two groups and asked to perform a recovery exercise for 15 minutes during their lunch break. One group participated in a park walk, while the other group participated in relaxation exercises. After 10 working days, the park walk group reported better concentration and less fatigue in the afternoon following the walk. The relaxation exercises group reported better concentration and less strain and fatigue in the afternoon. The researchers suggest that recovery exercises, such as a 15 minute walk or relaxation exercises, can have significant improvements on workers’ ability to concentrate and on their mental wellbeing.
Read the research summary here!