Feeding Your Creative Mind for Better Productivity

11 Oct


I have discovered the secret to creative focus and productivity and it wasn’t a pill. It wasn’t even magic. It just feels like magic.

Look at the little green boxes across the top of the graphic above. An empty box is a day when no writing occurred. An x inside the box indicates that I wrote 750 words or more. A slash indicates that I wrote but did not meet the 750 word minimum. So September’s output wasn’t great.

I don’t have a graph for August because my concentration was so bad I couldn’t read three pages of a book without getting distracted, let alone write three. I don’t know why my ability to concentrate has been so terrible lately. Maybe the wet summer produced extra mold. Maybe it’s the crop dusters. Maybe I was just burnt out or perhaps Facebook and Twitter fried my brain cells. But all was not as hopeless as it seemed. I found a cure for my distraction.

Look at my output for October.


Starting around the last day of September something clicked and I have been on a roll ever since. I’m writing every day and the word count going up. I’ve already written more words in October than I did in all of September. I’m actually doing more than what shows in the graph, but I haven’t figured out a wy to track progress on revisions yet– this is just the output on the rough draft I have been working on.

What accounted for the change? I gave up Wheat and Dairy. I may be the only person who goes on a diet because they can’t concentrate, but darned if it didn’t work. I gave up dairy September fifth and felt terrible for the first three days. On the fourth day I felt as if a fog had lifted from my brain. I felt so good that I quit wheat the following day to see what would happen. No withdrawal issues, but after a few days I noticed a sharp drop in my appetite and that has continued.

I guess it takes a little time for body and brain to adapt. I know there was a week straight where I could barely sit still I had so much energy. And about the end of September something clicked and I have a level of focus I thought I’d never be able to acquire without medical intervention. I had heard that some people with attention problems respond really well to a GFCF diet. I must be one of them. I can happily give up pizza and ice cream forever it means the concentration wars are over.

So that’s my secret. Your results may vary. Has anyone else noticed a simple dietary change had a positive impact on their productivity?

BTW, these stats are from 750 words.com. If you ever wanted a ton of statistics about your writing, sign up for their free account and spend some writing time there each day. You might be surprised what you learn about your creative process.

6 Responses to “Feeding Your Creative Mind for Better Productivity”

  1. madelineiva October 11, 2012 at 2:50 pm #

    I saw the title and just knew this post had to be written by you, Nara. You feed my creativity all the time with helpful suggestions, advice, and excellent wisdom. 🙂

  2. shannonemmel October 11, 2012 at 2:54 pm #

    Thanks for the tip and “happy writing”!

    (You GO Girl!)


  3. Sofie Couch October 11, 2012 at 5:58 pm #

    Woo hoo, Nara! Love the plan, love the productivity tracker! I gave up dairy, (in most forms) three years ago and for three years I didn’t have a single cold, sniffle, snuffle. But in the past year, I’ve been letting dairy slip back into my diet. A month ago I joined a gym… and I immediately got sick. (It’s a freakin’ Petri dish in that place.) So now I’m back to the no dairy thing. I’ll have to ease into the no wheat thing, but I hear about its effectiveness all the time on my ADHD discussion boards.

  4. Marilyn Campbell October 12, 2012 at 11:08 am #

    What an interesting, totally unique blog today, Nara! It’s so very you! Always happy to learn new ways to increase productivity.


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