In this distraction-filled 21st century one important skill to treasure is the capacity to focus.


As a freelance translator, I discovered that concentration is key to improved productivity.  Therefore, the purpose of this article is to sensitize colleagues on the need to sharpen their focusing skill, because lack of it hinders performance.


Consequently, this article will discuss two major approaches that can help you to stay focused: (a) Nutrition-related approach, and (b) Life style behaviour approach.  Let’s begin with the


  1. Nutrition-Related Approach


The nutrition-related approach to staying naturally focused is discussed in terms of some foods that must make your diet regularly, and the herbal supplements.

  1. Food Diet

As a linguist, certain foods must be constant in your diet, because they boost concentration and prevent short-term memory.  For instance, for breakfast you could take egg, wheat bran cereal, and coffee.  Other foods include:

Fish and FlaxseedFlaxseed and oily fish like salmon and sardines are high in omega-3 fatty acids.  Fatty acid plays a key role in preserving brain health, and help improve attention, especially in children.

Some research shows that omega-3 fatty acids may help improve attention. For instance, in a study published in Neuropsychopharmacology in 2015, omega-3 supplementation was found to reduce symptoms of inattention in children.


Antioxidant-Rich Foods – According to a research review published in the European Journal of Nutrition in 2013, antioxidant nutrients such as vitamin C and vitamin E enhance cognitive ability like attention, memory, and problem-solving.

Other antioxidant foods are: Goji berries, wild blueberries, dark chocolate, pecans, artichoke, elderberries, kidney beans, cranberries, blackberries, and cilantro.



Curcumin is a popular spice that is also a traditional Ayurvedic natural remedy.  Experts confirm that curcumin improved memory and attention among healthy adults.


2. Herbal Supplements

As a linguist, these natural herbs can improve your mental focus and boost your total brain power! However, you must consult your physician before using them because some herbal therapies may interact with medications.


 Bacopa (bacopa monnieri) –  Bacopa monnieri is a highly esteemed Ayurvedic herb with a history of use that goes back over 3,000 years.

It serves as a brain tonic to enhance memory, learning, and concentration and also to treat anxiety, heart and lung problems and digestive disorders.

Brahmi –  Brahmi is believed to be effective by supporting the left and right spheres of the brain to work together more synergistically. This has been found to increase memory, intelligence, focus and capacity for learning.


Ginkgo Biloba – This herb is believed to offer numerous cognitive benefits. Some research suggests that ginkgo biloba may help to heal and regenerate the cells in your brain, which is clearly good news for your mental function as a linguist, especially as you age! Further studies suggest that this plant may also enhance memory, attention and  intelligence.

Gotu Kola – Gotu Kola is an herb found in Asia, Australia, India, South Africa and the South Pacific. It is high in nutrients that are needed for healthy brain function. Gotu Kola stimulates blood circulation to improve concentration, mental clarity, and attention span.


Green Tea – When stressed, grab a cup of green tea.  Green tea contains a little caffeine (about 25 mg per 8-ounce serving), and provides focus and energy while it relaxes you.

Furthermore, a pilot study published in the journal Nutrients in 2014 found that daily green tea intake helped improve cognitive function in a small group of older adults.

Rosemary – Rosemary is a popular  brain-booster; it helps with memory retention, especially when used as an essential oil in aromatherapy.

Daily intake of the herb rosemary may boost cognitive performance and sharpen memory in older adults, according to a small study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food in 2012.

b. Lifestyle Behaviours

Adopt these simple and healthy behaviors to boost your concentration:

Exercise regularly


Exercising can naturally help improve your focus.  For instance, aerobic exercises, a jog, run, or even a brisk walk outside, in the middle of that assignment will increase your concentration levels, improve your focus, and promote your memory capacity.




Jotting down information will help you remember and visualize your translation or transcription tasks for the day.  The habit of sticking a handy note beside your computer will remind you easily of your daily schedule, and can help improve your focus naturally.


Use Noise-Canceling Headphones

You may find a Noise-cancelling headphone very useful during transcription and translation tasks, because it will absorb external sounds that may interrupt your concentration.  Noise-pollution is everywhere and if you’re looking to block out noise to enable you focus, a headphone will do the trick.


Sleep Sufficiently


As a freelancer, the tendency is there to work round the clock at the expense of your health.  However, you need to maintain balance.  Sufficient sleep will keep you refreshed, and strong to resume your work with high concentration.


Manage Stress

The ability to manage your everyday stress will enhance your cognitive function.   Try stress-management techniques like prayer, meditation, breathing from your diaphragm, taking a walk, or expressing gratitude.  All these will make you feel happier, more relaxed and more focused.

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