It’s not always easy to focus. Whether you’re distracted by something in your working environment or whether you’re finding it difficult to concentrate because you can’t stop your mind from thinking about something else - many of us are searching for ways to boost our productivity.
We’ve blogged before about how taking a break is one of the best ways to be more productive, but here at doppel we’re constantly looking for ways you can help your mind (and body!) focus on the task ahead of you.
Working away from the office is becoming more popular, so in this post we explore the psychology behind the argument that it’s easier to stay productive if you set up in your local cafe.
Challenge your unproductive habits
A change of location can help you to get past some of the unproductive habits you’ve slipped into in your usual workplace.
In a widely cited study from 2005, researchers discovered that students who transferred to another college were more likely to change their daily habits than students who remained at the same place.
“Environmental cues are essential when it comes to habit formation, in part because the brain is excellent at connecting an environment with a specific situation,” explains Ralph Ryback, M.D., in an article for Psychology Today.
So if you’re struggling to complete a task that you usually work through in one location, swapping your desk for a cafe can help you break your routine and boost your productivity.
Reward your brain with a change of scene
The human brain loves novelty. When you’re presented with something new and exciting, your brain releases the chemical dopamine - the ‘feel good’ hormone that accompanies things like eating your favorite foods, and even doing something kind for a stranger.
While many studies focus on dopamine as a ‘reward’, new research shows that dopamine is also linked to motivation - and can even aid learning.
The atmosphere in a cafe is not only likely to be different to your usual work environment, but they can often be a hive of activity with new sights, sounds and smells to take in - meaning you can stay happy and motivated while you work.
Intention is everything
Just thinking that you're going to get a lot of work done in your local cafe is enough to help make that come true according to Lynne McTaggart author of The Intention Experiment. She conducted research at numerous different laboratories and universities to study how intent can actually impact our lives and found that intent can make all the difference.
This means that heading over to your local cafe with the sole intention of getting a specific task done could be all that it takes to help you feel focused.
So the next time you’re stuck watching the cursor flash on a blank document, grab your laptop and head out - and let us know if it helps! Although before you go, make sure you read our post about how caffeine affects the body because there can be productivity downsides to ordering too many coffees!