I don’t know who needs to hear this, but coffee alone is NOT going to get you through the day, sis! When we are super busy and always on the run, it’s easy to rationalize missing out on meals throughout the day: less time eating means more time working, and more time working obviously means a higher rate of productivity, right? 100% false!
In order for you to be highly productive and keep the ball rolling, you need to consistently nourish your mind and your body. And constantly refilling cups of coffee or grabbing fast food at one point in the day will not provide sufficient fuel to get the most out of your hustle. You may be able to push yourself for several hours, but you’ll for sure notice the difference in both the quality of your work and your attitude and energy levels while you’re working. Trying to get your brain’s juices flowing without enough nutrients can put you in a groggy or irritable mood, or you’ll dread doing anything on your task list. What we choose to consume (or not consume) impacts our cognitive abilities and significantly affects our energy levels. So it’s important to keep your vessel fueled with products to maintain your energy and motivation while you’re grinding.
As someone who can identify with Team ‘Working On the Weekend Like Usual’, I can admit that it gets sticky trying to establish a routine that centers balance, especially when you want to put your all into your work. But if you think about work and wellness as a scale of sorts, it’s easy to understand the effects of investing more into one aspect than the other. One side will be solid, abundant, even to the point of overflowing, while the other side will be light, unstable, and lacking. As I am in this process myself, I highly suggest testing out new, efficient ways to achieve balance in work and wellness so that you can sustain and even increase your productivity. Keep the methods that work, toss the ones that don’t, and continue building out the routine that fits you best.
A cheat code that has continually worked for me, even on the most hectic of days, is meal prepping, particularly with healthy smoothies. What once seemed like another health fad quickly became a staple in my wellness routine, and I’ll never look back. If you take a few hours on the weekend to research and choose your ingredients, lay them out, and blend them up, keeping up with your health while also keeping up the hard work will feel much more like you taking control as opposed to a chore.
And let me say this, all smoothies are not created equal. We know that different fruits and vegetables do different things for our body .But customizing my smoothie ingredients has helped me optimize my time and enhance my daily wellness routine. And depending on your taste, allergies, or food preferences, you may end up trying one hundred concoctions before finding the smoothie menu that works best for you. No matter how your taste buds are set up, though, having key ingredients that help boost your energy and brain power will ensure that you’re getting the nutrients you need to keep you going.
Try adding these ingredients to your smoothies to help your body, mind, and work stay in tip top shape:
Kale has been called the Lebron James of vegetables. If that’s not enough of a reason to add it to your smoothie, in a single cup of kale, you’ll get 134% of your daily vitamin C, 206% of your daily vitamin A, and 684% of your daily vitamin K. These are some of the essential vitamins and minerals that the brain depends on to function. Kale also has a lot of protein, iron, folate, and vitamin B6, all the vitamins that make kale the perfect brain food.
And not to mention, kale is a master adapter and blends in pretty well with almost any combination of fruits and vegetables.
A Nut Butter
No matter how hard you try, working on an empty stomach never turns out well. Nut butters like peanut butter or almond butter contain healthy fats and protein that provide an amazing boost of energy and help fill you up without weighing you down.
You can also try using nut butter alternatives like sunflower butter and coconut butter if you have a nut allergy.
Did you know that dehydration is one of the main culprits for a fuzzy brain or distraction? Without enough water, you might find it hard to stay focused and in sync with your brain. And thankfully, cucumbers are one of the ultimate hydrating ingredients, being that it is made up of 96% of water. You can add cucumbers to almost any smoothie to restore your body’s fluids and keep you fresh and invigorated.
Yes, adding seeds to a smoothie sounds like a weird concept, but chia seeds are one of the most brain-friendly ingredients to incorporate. This “superfood” has high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, for optimal brain function, and fiber to keep you full.
Chia seeds also have a mild taste and take on the flavor of whatever food or beverage they are added to. When added to liquid, they swell, melt, and eventually turn into a gel, which makes it easy to digest and perfect to add to a smoothie.
Even though these amazing fruits don’t have as adaptable of a taste as the rest of the ingredients, they are definitely worth having if you need to increase your productivity. Firstly, they rival cucumbers with their 85% water make-up. But all berries are packed with antioxidants that can heighten energy levels and improve memory too!
Even though creating your all-star line up of smoothies involves physical changes to what you consume, elevating your daily routine to maintain boss-level productivity levels without sacrificing your overall well being starts with a mind shift. Finding a balance with work and wellness, and really with any aspects of our lives, requires making the decision, as well as the intentionality and consistency to continue. Hopefully these amazing ingredients will give you a boost of excitement to start!
Kymberly Deane is a writer, content creator, and storyteller based in Brooklyn, New York. Her passion for continual self-improvement and exploring new things has led her to become a health and wellness zealot, with a particular love for sexual health and wellness. She uses her writing to share the gems she discovers throughout her journey.