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From Pro Plus to polyphenols: how I (finally) managed to stay focused

Struggle to stay focused? You’re not alone. Here’s how Heights co-founder Joel improved his focus and concentration.

Joel Freeman
Joel Freeman
August 11, 2021
4 min read

I’ve always wanted to succeed, but figuring out how to stay focused has always been the problem. 

As a kid, I could do most things without ever needing to try very hard. (Yeah, I was one of those kids.) Which of course, was great at the time. But, it meant I never needed to learn how to improve my focus and concentration. 

(While we’re on the subject actually, surely learning how to stay focused should be a subject at school? I can’t be the only one that has struggled with this in adulthood!)

As I got older, this trend continued. I could still perform at a high level, but without ever knuckling down and focusing.

It became clear that ability without knowing how to stay focused won’t get you anywhere, and I struggled to fulfil my potential.

Stimulants to improve focus and concentration… good idea?

At university, my lack of concentration meant that I left everything to the last minute, relying on Pro Plus and Red Bull to get me through. Artificial stimulants did their job, but crashes followed the highs, and that just made it harder to concentrate again. It was a vicious cycle.

I got a job after graduating, and hoped I would find purpose, and by proxy, my focus there. I didn’t really. Then I started my own company. I was working insane hours. All-nighters led to more caffeine, more rushes, more crashes. 

I was in a spiral of overstimulation and exhaustion, and I knew it wasn’t sustainable.

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Experimenting with natural ways to improve focus

Obviously, caffeine wasn’t helping, and I knew I couldn’t continue to put myself through this intense roller coaster forever. So, I tried replacing this with a few natural alternatives—ginkgo, guaraná, that sort of thing. The problem was, they were still short-term fixes. Probably healthier, but still a hit of energy followed by a crash, which only increased the stress.

It was demoralising, and frustrating. I knew I could achieve more, but I kept getting distracted. 

I needed to solve the problem for good—find something that helped sustain my focus consistently, without the peaks and troughs.

The answer? Brain nutrition to stay focused, long term

After finding out about the benefits of nutrition on brain health, I was hooked. I wanted to reach my potential long-term, in a sustainable, balanced way.

Then, I found out what it would take to adjust my diet that much. It felt impossible. I like blueberries as much as the next person, but a whole punnet every day? On top of seeds, greens, and seaweed? It wasn’t happening. The alternative was shelling out £100 a month for all the supplements I’d need. I wasn’t happy about it, but there was no other choice.

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The problem with (most) supplements for focus

Obviously this cocktail of nutrients worked wonders for my health, but they only worked when I took them. That seems obvious, but let me explain. They were all in different forms, had different quantities, different dosages. Some had to be taken on a full stomach, some didn’t. Some needed to be taken alone. Others just before bed. I couldn’t keep track and missed them, skipped them, or just ran out.

And that’s why we started Heights

The idea for the Smart Supplement is based on making it easy to get everything you need in one place, from natural ingredients, delivered regularly so you can’t run out. 

And if it’s a third of the price of all the supplements I was taking combined. So that doesn’t hurt. 

Finally staying focused, in a way that works 

I learned the hard way there’s no magic pill or shortcut. Give your brain the right nutrients, build a habit, and go from there. I take the Smart Supplement every day, and if you’ve ever struggled with focus, like I did, you might find it helpful too. Just knowing I’m looking after my brain puts me at ease. Less distraction, more control.

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