Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Eating and Diet Hacks to Increase Your Writing Productivity

If you ever hope to do significant amounts of writing, you'll need to manage your energy levels and mental focus over the course of a day's work.

You can easily do this by tweaking your eating habits.

On my most productive days, I start with a large, energy-dense breakfast, plus a couple of cups of strong coffee. This combination works perfectly: coffee gives me a good wake-up jolt, while the large meal gives me plenty of fuel to last the entire morning. Mornings are usually my period of peak productivity, so if I happen to have an especially good writing session, I can keep going for hours without interrupting my momentum to eat.

If my writing isn't going well, I'll usually take a break sometime in the mid-morning and go for a run, and then come back and take another stab at more writing.

Another key point: Breakfast is my only large meal during the day. Rather than eating a large lunch, I'll eat two or three small, quick meals over the course of the day. A typical meal might be a fruit smoothie, brown rice or some pasta.

Eating a few light meals like this keeps me from slipping into a food coma--a huge productivity killer--but it also keeps my blood sugar from getting too low, which can also sap my energy and my cognitive skills.

Readers: What dietary hacks do you use to optimize your writing and working over the course of a day?