Focus Toolkit: Tools to Improve Your Focus & Concentration | Huberman Lab Podcast #88
In this episode, I provide a list of behavioral, nutritional, and supplement-based tools you can use to improve your ability to get into a focused state to do mental or physical work. I explain science-supported strategies for transitioning into focus, maintaining focus during the work bout, and exiting the focus session, which is also critical, including decompression/defocusing tools. I explain when and how to use: binaural beats, caffeine, deliberate cold exposure, the pros and cons of working in fasted vs. fed states, and supplements and foods that enhance dopamine, epinephrine (i.e., adrenaline) and acetylcholine to promote optimal focus. Also, I explain how short behavioral practices, such as meditation and visual gaze training, will benefit your ability to focus over the long term. As deep focus is crucial to significantly improve cognitive or physical performance in any realm, this episode should be useful to anyone. By the end, you’ll have an essential toolkit of science-supported, low- to zero-cost focus and concentration strategies to select from that can be tailored to your physical and mental performance needs.
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Acute Stress Improves Concentration Performance: https://bit.ly/3wVuJoh
Human physiological responses to immersion into water of different temperatures: https://bit.ly/3ep6Z5x
Brief, daily meditation enhances attention, memory, mood, and emotional regulation in non-experienced meditators: https://bit.ly/3ai0X4D
Altered Traits: Science Reveals How Meditation Changes Your Mind, Brain, and Body: https://amzn.to/3wXsKj8
Huberman Lab Toolkit for Sleep: https://hubermanlab.com/toolkit-for-sleep
BrainWave (App Store): https://apple.co/3QavGzO
Brain Waves (Google Play): https://bit.ly/3enO8HP
White, Pink vs. Brown Noise: https://youtu.be/aiyh2j-BfkQ
Madefor NSDR: https://youtu.be/pL02HRFk2vo
Anna Park Yerba Mate: https://amzn.to/3wzvfrV
00:00:00 Focus Toolkit
00:04:25 Momentous Supplements
00:05:38 Thesis, LMNT, Eight Sleep
00:09:37 The “Arrow Model” of Focus: Epinephrine, Acetylcholine & Dopamine
00:15:15 Modulation vs. Mediation, Importance of Sleep
00:18:11 Tool: Binaural Beats to Improve Concentration
00:20:54 Tool: White, Brown & Pink Noise, Transition to Focused State
00:22:55 Warm-Up for Cognitive Work, Refocusing Attention & Neuroplasticity
00:26:14 Tool: Ultradian Cycles: Warm-Up, Maintaining Focus & Deliberate Defocusing
00:31:22 How Many Daily Ultradian Cycles Can One Perform?
00:34:14 AG1 (Athletic Greens)
00:35:35 Virtusan: Mental & Physical Health Journeys
00:36:52 Tool: Fasted vs. Fed States & Focus, Prevent an Afternoon Crash, Ketosis
00:45:52 Tool: Foods to Improve Focus & Regulating Food Volume
00:47:53 Tool: Caffeine & Focused Work, Dopamine Efficacy, Alertness
00:52:55 Tool: Stress & Improved Concentration
00:55:46 Tool: Deliberate Cold Exposure & Focus, Dopamine & Epinephrine
01:00:39 Layer Focusing Tools & Design Your Own Protocols
01:01:19 Tool: Short Meditation & Improved Ability to Refocus
01:07:40 Tool: Yoga Nidra, Non-Sleep Deep Rest (NSDR) & Defocus Periods
01:12:13 Tool: Hypnosis & Focus/Deep Relaxation States
01:16:07 Optimal Time of Day to Use Specific Tools
01:16:46 Tool: Overt Visual Focus & Deliberate Gaze
01:20:42 Covert Visual Focus; Deliberate Gaze Warm-Up & Focused Work
01:24:43 Tool: Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids
01:27:28 Tool: Creatine Monohydrate
01:29:10 Tool: Alpha-GPC & Acetylcholine, Increased Risk of Stroke? & Garlic
01:33:52 Tool: L-Tyrosine Supplements & Food
01:34:47 Combining & Choosing Focus Tools, Variability
01:36:50 ADHD Prescriptions, Training Neural Circuits, Maintenance & Reduced Dosage
01:39:19 Tool: Optimal Order Approaching Focus Tools, Prescriptions & Dependency
01:42:56 Tool: Phenylethylamine & Dopamine
01:44:50 Tool: Other Supplements to Enhance Dopamine, Epinephrine & Acetylcholine
01:46:46 Behavioral, Nutrition & Supplement Tools for Focus
01:49:12 Zero-Cost Support, YouTube Feedback, Spotify & Apple Reviews, Momentous Supplements, AG1 (Athletic Greens), Instagram, Twitter, Neural Network Newsletter
Title Card Photo Credit: Mike Blabac – https://www.blabacphoto.com
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for a qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information.
I periodically do Keto, like for 30 days, twice or three times a year to manage my body fat percentage. But although I'm convinced that a healthy Keto is hard and unnecessary to maintain as a lifestyle, it does affect my cognitive function positively. I am hyperactive and I feel much less brain fog when in ketosis. Maybe it's placebo, but I do feel do.
Now if we'd use all of this cutting edge research in education and work places that would be awesome
What’s the point of going to college with all the information Dr.Huberman and Joe Rogan give us, let’s just mooch off them and live to 150.
At about half an hour into the podcast you are talking about being idle and letting your mind wander. Does listening to music while walking fall into that category or should we be completely disconected?
The real life Walter White lol
This was great as usual.. thank you!:) so.. carcinogens and smoking.. i think that would be a good episode:) i like to smoke meats.. and the way you talk about avoiding it in your tea worries me lol
Jumping in with an off topic, totally relevant on topic interest. Would you be willing to research and present regarding post-viral fatigue syndromes like Long Covid and ME/CFS? That is a huge request, but it is important to a lot of people. I have two concerns. One is that people first experiencing Long Covid not push themselves, because this causes it to set in firmly. The other is that hormetic challenges, like cold showers, felt wonderful to me before I got ME/CFS in 1980, but now seem to trigger inflammation (which might be its advantage in a healthy person) and trigger perhaps a cytokine cascade or by some other pathway, trigger inflammation run amok in me, and put me out of commission.
Post-viral Fatigue Syndromes seem to occur disproportionately frequently among high performing people, athletes, and "super-nurtures" … people who are accustomed to pushing themselves … so many among your audience would be particularly vulnerable.
I'm in my early 70's, and with all of the amazing research, I want to be over it and be hiking in the High Sierras again in my final decade, whenever that is.
This is a huge request, I know, but "I'm not the only".
There are some researchers with good insights that you could consult with. I think I would first recommend Dr. Robert Naviaux, MD, PhD, UC San Diego, professor of Medicine, Pediatrics, and Pathology; founder and co-director of the Mitochondrial and Metabolic Disease Center; and former president of the Mitochondrial Medicine Society – someone with whom you would share interests and background, I would think.
I hope you have time to pursue this.
In any case, thank you for your work!
How much does being in public or next to people change neurochemistry? Seems like sometimes my body gets warmer being near other ppl even when i dont move nor arent in contact in them like adrenaline would be produced or smth like that, and on the other hand sometimes when we dont want to be surrounded with the ppl we are surrounded with then we feel cold even when we move or excersise and are in cool or cold weather though i might remember wrong
After listening to this podcast for a month I can’t stop buzzing to my friends about sleep, hippocampus, urine being filtered blood, nasal microbiom etc etc etc…The only question I have now, how can I study neuroscience, as there is definitely life before and after Huberman lab podcasts
Great podcast thank you! For behavioral techniques i am curious what your thoughts are on research regarding movement, like cross body movement, and touch via massage. Also protocols for children! Years ago i did quite a bit of math tutoring and even teaching in a private high school. The students with adhd were so challenged even with medication. It angered me so they weren't getting any nonphamacological guidance from any health professionals. Hopefully that will change soon!
Interesting how this episode's length coincides with the suggested duration of a focus block (more or less)
I prefer sleeping than NSDR!
The more I listen to your podcasts I think I’m falling in love with your descriptive and very realistic informative contents that are actually make clear sense to understand and say aha. So bravo and thank you for your time and knowledge sharing. You filled the spaces I need to hear 😘
Good day Professor Huberman; and good day to your team. Thanks for your excellent videos/podcasts. You are delivering tons of useful stuff.
I have a feeling that the benefits of neurplasticity may extend to helping people on Austism Spectrum. Is that correct? If so, what research shows this? And what protocols might be helpful? What needs to be researched further in this area? And would you mind presenting on the topic Austism or Autism Spectrum Disorder(s)?
Once again thank you for helping making neurobiology and interesting parts of research in the area accessible to the public.
Anyone else listen to this while on the toilet? Guilty
How long should I listen the 40hz binaural beat for?
Great content. Thank You Sir
Your suggestions of watching the sun rise and sun set has not only improved my life, but the lives of my hospice patients that can still get out there and see it. Your work is changing lives with years left on this earth and those with only a few months left. Thank you for everything.