What Is Mind Blanking? Tips to Get Rid of That Foggy Feeling

Updated on March 3, 2019
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Janis is a licensed professional counselor in Washington, DC. Areas of specialty include grief, loss, life transition, and trauma recovery.

Drawing a blank in the brain is frustrating when you have work to do or something important to say.
Drawing a blank in the brain is frustrating when you have work to do or something important to say. | Source

What's That Foggy Feeling in My Head?

We've all experienced it at one time or another. It's that dreaded feeling when your brain goes blank, where you stop in mid-sentence and the words don't come. Or you don't remember where you just put your keys.

Mind blanking is a full-on fight-or-flight response that occurs during frantic moments when we think of nothing for a moment or two. This mental state shares similarities with mind wandering. While mind wandering occurs when thoughts unrelated to the current task are brought to the forefront of our attention, no stimuli is brought to mind during a mind blank.

Adrian Ward Ph.D., Assistant Professor at the University of Texas at Austin, describes the phenomena as " . . . conscious awareness [that] is directed neither toward the present perceptual environment nor toward stimuli decoupled from this environment."

This article will detail:

  1. Why am I drawing a blank?
  2. What happens when my mind goes blank?
  3. What practical steps combat blank brain?
  4. What are strategies for prevention?

Blank Brain by Another Name

Depending on the context, blank brain is sometimes called brain fatigue, brain fog, overworked brain, brain drain, brain freeze, or writer's block.

Why Am I Drawing a Blank?

There are both internal and external origins for the reasons our brains blank. Some of the causes include:

  • Change: New results towards a goal may require a way of thinking that is new to the brain. Sometimes our mind sabotages our efforts in order to remain immutable.
  • Anxiety associated with performing before a group: Our fear of public speaking and the feelings of vulnerability that comes with it is a common stress-prompting event that causes us to draw blanks.
  • Medication: If you experience brain fog after recently taking medication, than you should talk to your doctor to make sure that it is a side effect of the drug.
  • Lack of sleep: We are less efficient when our bodies are not operating off of a healthy night's rest.
  • Feeling Overwhelmed: Our busy lives may wear us thin if we are not taking measures to take care of ourselves. Sometimes our brain goes blank when we realize that we have less resources than required for all the tasks we need to get done.

Medical Conditions

Medical conditions linked with blanking out typically include inflammation, fatigue, and changes in blood sugar levels. Those diagnosed with fibromyalgia may experience mental fatigue on a daily basis. Other conditions that cause empty-headed symptoms include:

  • anemia
  • hypothyroidism
  • depression
  • arthritis
  • lupus
  • Alzheimer's disease

Blank brain interrupts creative flow, preventing retrieval, recall and our ability to express.
Blank brain interrupts creative flow, preventing retrieval, recall and our ability to express. | Source

What Happens When My Mind Goes Blank?

For most people, mind blanking is an irritating phenomenon that temporarily interrupts us from doing what needs to get done. Why does this happen?

The Anatomy of the Empty Head

There are three main regions of that brain that are involved when our minds go blank: the hypothalamus, the hippocampus, and the prefrontal cortex (PFC).

  • Hypothalamus: The bridge between our perceived emotions and our physical sensations. The hypothalamus is strongly associated with our endocrine system and the hormones that exist throughout our bodies.
  • Hippocampus: The center of our emotions. The hippocampus plays a pivotal role in both learning and fact retrieval.
  • Prefrontal Cortex: Controls the aspects that differentiate humans from other animals including planning, decision-making, impulse control, and social interaction.

Hot and Cold Cognition

During predictable, everyday tasks our brains engage in cold cognition. The hypothalamus is slowed down, and we are able to enjoy our music or study while our stress hormone levels are low.

On the other hand, risky, unpredictable situations place us in the realm of hot cognition. Someone who must choose between meeting a deadline or joining friends at a party may experience hot cognition. As a result of the stress and perceived threat, the hypothalamus activates the fight-or-flight response which subsequently releases cortisol and other exciting hormones into our bodies. These hormones invade the PFC and the hippocampus, disrupting neuronal activity and our normal brain patterns. As a result, our methods for factual retrieval and recall methods are disrupted.

Remember

Hot cognition is operated by the hypothalamus (and other subcortical regions). This emotionally-charged way of reasoning overrules the normal cold cognition way of thinking that is run by the prefrontal cortex.

Five Practical Steps to Taking Control and Combating Blank Brain

In order to combat blank brain, five critical areas need to be addressed. Being proactive can help decrease the fears, frustration, and lack of control this phenomenon can cause in your life.

These steps are offered based solely on years of experience counseling clients who deal with high levels of exposure to stress and performance anxiety.

1. Understand How the Brain Works

  • Accept that the brain at times can go on overload and needs a break; even computers crash so why not the complex human brain.
  • The brain has the capacity to store an infinite amount of information but cannot always retrieve it immediately.
  • Short-term memory, long-term memory, and attentiveness determine your ability to retain, recall, and retrieve information; it's not your fault.

2. Don't Take Yourself so Seriously

  • Re-adjust your expectations about producing; temporarily reset your goals.
  • Laugh at yourself when you fumble or forget what to say; play it off with a confident demeanor and move on.
  • Read a sample of your favorite work or view a video of your best presentation to remind yourself how productive you have been and can be again; you are the same person with the same skills.

3. Use Specific Techniques to Assist You

  • Learn deep breathing exercises; incoporate them into your life as a way to stabilize and maintain a sense of inner calm; at the moment of blank brain, take a long, deep breath, relax, collect your thoughts, and allow your memory to do it's job before anxiety sets in.
  • Do not take information in passively; be alert and attentive to the information you want to retain, remember, and retrieve later; pay attention to external cues, make them meaningful to you; let your awareness of information around you feed your ideas.
  • Keep written notes and ideas on 3x5 cards; have them handy for presentations in case you draw a blank; for writers, use the same technique to jot down ideas that you can refer back to and expand upon when you're having a dry spell. Create an idea bank.

Blank Brain Produces Empty Pages and Blank Screens

Empty pages of a notebook is a metaphor for the creative brain going blank.
Empty pages of a notebook is a metaphor for the creative brain going blank. | Source

4. Know Your Stuff

  • If you familiarize yourself with your topic, know what you're talking about, do your research, and strive to become an expert, you are less likely to flub or go blank. Develop a niche.
  • Expand your experiences and social circles to increase exposure to more encounters from which you can draw more ideas. Sitting at home without regular social interaction and involvement will not lend itself to fresh ideas coming into your head.
  • Learn something new that you're not necessarily interested in and either speak about it or write about it. You may discover something new and unexpected that will stimulate new ways of thinking outside the box. Use a thesaurus for new words and phrasings to change up your speaking or writing flavor.

5. Know Yourself

  • Be aware and honest with yourself about personal issues, losses, elevated stress levels, or unresolved traumas that might be getting in the way of your capacity to function optimally. Self-care, breaks, regular support, and healthy outlets are necessary for sustained productivity and performance.

Seek Medical Attention

Recurring panic attacks, sleep problems, changes in appetite, dizziness, headaches, poor concentration, fatigue and other symptoms of depression may be signs that you need medical assistance. If these symptoms persist, worsen, or prevent daily functioning at home and at work for a significant duration (six months or more for anxiety, two weeks or more for depression), consider a medical or neurological evaluation.

Relieve Your Blank Brain With Knowledge and Prevention

Luckily, there are simple ways to go about preventing our mind's from going blank in the future. With a little practice and discipline, these untimely patterns can be unlearned.

1. Be comfortable informing people your mind has gone blank.

Panicking and worrying about the potentially humiliating consequences of having nothing to say in that moment will not help your thoughts come.

2. Ground yourself in your environment.

Center your attention outside of your mind. Take notice of your environment with the help of your senses. Breath deeply and let the anxiety fade on its own.

3. Follow your intuition.

Don't over-exert your mind when it goes blank. Let your higher source guide you until it is safe to return your focus.

Avoid Strategizing When You Go Blank

Attempting to plan action while your brain is foggy will only further strain your cognitive efforts. Don't force yourself to pay attention to every thought you encounter. Practice de-attachment, and allow your thoughts to pass.

4. Silence is not disastrous.

Silent moments in conversation is bound to happen. Practice maintaining your outer composure and moving on when you feel that disaster has struck. Being secure in ourselves is all mental.

5. Know your limitations.

In our society where productivity and performance define our self-worth, blank brain can take a toll on our ability to live up to our professional and personal expectations. We contribute to those unrealistic expectations by pushing ourselves too much. Exercise, eat well, and avoid overindulging on caffeine, alcohol, and drugs.

We have more control than we think we do by taking preventative steps to combat blank brain. Taking better care of ourselves will increase our ability to produce good work on a consistent basis.

Symptoms and Relief for Brain Fog Related to Fibromyalgia

Sources

Dr. Shroff, Sudeep Do You Sometimes Go Blank? Resource Life. Retrieved from http://resourcefullife.net/going-blank/

Macleod, Chris. When Your Mind Goes Blank, Or You Can Only Think Slowly, In Social Situations. Succeed Socially. 2006. Retrieved from https://www.succeedsocially.com/mindgoesblank.

Ward, Andre. Mind-blanking: When the Mind Goes Away. inPsychology. 27 September, 2013. Retrieved from https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00650/full.

Drawing a Blank Brain

When does your brain draw the most blanks?

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This content is for informational purposes only and does not substitute for formal and individualized diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed medical professional. Do not stop or alter your current course of treatment. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

Questions & Answers

  • I am seriously worried about myself. I am feeling that I don't have any wishes, any ideas or nothing to strive for. I am feeling that this life of mine is a waste. I have no interests, and I am not passionate about anything. How can I overcome these feelings?

    What you're presenting will take some time to sort through, preferably with a good therapist you can meet with regularly. It sounds like you're in search of purpose, fulfillment, identity, and connection to something that will inspire you. I wish you peace.

  • When someone is talking to me, and I am just listening, my brain sometimes gets fuzzy, and I can only hear what they are saying and don't fully understand it. This has been happening for about a year now. What could be wrong?

    It sounds like you're not processing what you hear or attending to it. In other words, it could be that you are distracted and not focused on the content of conversations. Attentive listening skills don't come naturally and need practice. To rule out any neurological problems, it may be a good idea to share this with a physician for advice on whether an assessment is needed. Thanks for taking the time to read this article, excuse the delayed reply.

  • I find that my mind goes blank when asked a question at work and it’s freaking me out. I literally cannot get my brain to come up with a coherent answer. Its only been this year and I’m very worried about what it means. Does it sound like anything specific?

    Other than anxiety, it probably isn't anything more specific. The best defense against this type of blanking out is to increase your confidence level and believe that what you have to share is as important as the rest of your colleagues. Having a good grasp of your knowledge area is also paramount to your being prepared to answer any questions that should be presented to you.

  • I at random forget who I am, where I am, and who the people around me are. I also have to stare at myself for long periods in the mirror to remind myself who I am. Sometimes I forget that I have a boyfriend and a baby and wake up with them there and I'm confused. What do I do?

    It sounds like it would be best to discuss these symptoms with a medical doctor who can make an assessment of what might be going on. A neurological test may be indicated.

  • What is the general purpose/objective of the mind blanking?

    I'm not sure of your question but it appears to imply that there is some intentionality with the mind blanking. I suppose that it's possible that anxiety can cause one to intentionally avoid situations by "blanking out." In that sense, the purpose or objective would be to avoid an uncomfortable or psychologically unsafe situation by retreating inward, causing one's mind to "shut down" due to fear. Hope I've answered your question. It may require you to do more research outside the parameters of this article.

© 2012 Janis Leslie Evans

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    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 weeks ago from Washington, DC

      Sounds like you tried everything without success. Maybe you can consider starting over with treatment; Get a fresh start with a new therapist to address self-esteem and self-confidence issues. Since you were on medication so long ago, a new evaluation would be helpful. Also consider talking to your doctor about taking an holistic approach regarding medication if you don't agree with traditional prescription medications. Thanks for reading, I wish you well.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 weeks ago from Washington, DC

      So sorry for your loss.This sounds like classic symptoms of grief and anxiety. I hope you will find a good therapist to address the shock of this devastating loss which can affect functioning in several ways. Since the symptoms started after your loss, it is likely that it is affecting your ability to focus and be present. Also consider a support group for women dealing with miscarriage. I wish you peace.

    • profile image

      Noemi 

      3 weeks ago

      I had a miscarage 1 month ago and since then ive been really distracted. I dont pay attentions like i used to and when my husband speaks he has to call my name 5 times to get my attention, today i blanked out when parking my car and crashed the parked car infront. I dont understand what happend my mind went black i somehow forgot which pedal was stop and to stop.

    • profile image

      Roll the dice 

      3 weeks ago

      Hi I tend to get forgetful and not take in when I’m given instructions, I should know what I’m doing as I will have days I do so good and other days my co workers look at me as if I’m on drugs with I’m not I’m healthy, fit 52 and have just been in this job for Nearly 7 months, but I feel every e uses me. And my head is telling me they dont think I’m all there, I feel bad as I beat myself up and worry and people see me stressing and apologising all the time I put myself down a lot , I’m exhausted, tired and I don’t feel good about wear my life is going, I’m lonely and I need to stay strong for my 3 teenagers, as I’m a single parent and I have seen a psychologist before but I feel they just look at me and look at their clock , I was on depression tablets about 8 years ago but went of them as I don’t agree with them and it wasn’t helping me

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 months ago from Washington, DC

      I'm sure the hospital staff assessed your symptoms before treating you and determined a panic attack which sounds accurate. The foggy mind you felt was probably just another symptom of anxiety which, in your case, lead to a panic attack. I would suggest you consult with your doctor to rule out any other medical issues that may contribute to your panic. In the mean time, addressing the anxiety through counseling or breathing and relaxation exercises may help. Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      Jasmine 

      2 months ago

      I was having a panic attack and then my whole body went numb and I felt like I was dying like it was severe coz there panic lasted from 4pm till 12:00am and only stopped coz hospital gave me a pill, before the pill during my time of panic my mind felt foggy and gone and I couldn’t even read in my head it felt so empty and hot, can I please have some advice on that

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 months ago from Washington, DC

      You're welcome, thanks for reading.

    • Anime is the best profile image

      Anime is the best 

      2 months ago

      this really helps

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 months ago from Washington, DC

      Unfortunately, the only person who can answer your question is a doctor. I understand you cannot afford treatments but an assessment would have to happen in order to understand your situation and if the accident caused the problem. Check with hospitals and universities or the National Institutes of Health to see if you qualify for participation in a study. Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      Rhoda 

      2 months ago

      Thanks ma for your time. Like today i experienced mind blank i was in a meeting people are talking but my mind was not there i was just thinking hope i will not disgrace myself as i cant seem to feel my mind absolving anything they are saying or even having any contributions upstairs, this has been happening reccurrently. Also i do not remember words to complete my sentences most times, i forget things i also do have mood swings this makes me not to be sure of what i can do, i do not have money to go for treatments. I rilly do not like this about me because i used to be intelligent growing up but now i do not know what brought about all this. Also around 2005 i bumped my head in a car could this be the cause, but when it happened i did not feel any headache or swolleness but the bump was with great force, could all this am going through be as a result of that accident? Thanks.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 months ago from Washington, DC

      I'm not sure about exactly what might be happening with you. But it sounds like when you get overwhelmed by all that you have to do, your mind goes to overload. This causes you to obsess about the list instead of taking action. Maybe you can try to shorten the list and do your tasks in blocks. Sometimes when we have so much to do, it causes us to shut down and become paralyzed with anxiety. Break up your tasks, take a breath and proceed. Hope this helps, thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      Gaby 

      2 months ago

      I get overlapping thoughts and my mind suddenly went blank while in the process of listing things I need to do for the day.I tried recalling about it and it is bothering me until I realized my time is wasted recalling about it.Any advice on this.Thank you!

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 months ago from Washington, DC

      One thing that would be very helpful is counseling. It gives you a safe and confidential place to talk freely about your fears and social anxieties while practicing your self-expression with a supportive person. Consider counseling as a first step to building your confidence for interacting socially. Hope this helps, thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      Jayshree singh 

      2 months ago

      I feel that my mind become light and i dont store anything for long time which i remember my questions and answers i think myself that i dont know how to talk with others i think my communications skills is soo bad i don't interact people what i do

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 months ago from Washington, DC

      I would recommend that you share your specific symptoms with a medical doctor who may give you a referral to see a neurologist for an assessment. It may be time for an update of your diagnosis to get more information about what may be going on with you. Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      christopher scott 

      3 months ago

      i have been diagnosed with schizophrenia before. also, I have seen decline in my attention span and ability to function effectively and think critically on so many situation. On several occasions I have done things out of impulse, withdrew from friends and mostly i am shy and socially awkward around people. growing up i thought this was something every kid go through and with time, one could be able to grow and mature, however it seems as if all i have read cannot be recalled and I fear I have been learning based on rote memorization rather than understand fully what I studied. At work, i constantly find myself not being able to deliver on time and effectively work to satisfaction. I fear dementia or some related mental issue is affecting me. considering the triviality of the work environment and scarcity of job, i would really like you to help me on this. especially me being socially awkward.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 months ago from Washington, DC

      It must be very difficult and worrisome to see your mom like this. I hope it gets better for both of you. It would be best to ask a medical doctor to evaluate your mom and give you a prognosis about her recovery. Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      GIan 

      3 months ago

      Pls help me. This early morning my mother bought something but he can say it to me then after few hours he got some head ache and then he said i dont remember anything and he dont know my name anymore is there any chances she can recover again? Im so worried

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 months ago from Washington, DC

      Thanks for sharing your dilemma, Ashley. You hit the nail on the head in explaining how it affects you and feels like it's becoming a social phobia. From what you've described, it sounds like social anxiety or performance anxiety in social situations where you feel you're being evaluated on the spot. In addition to thorough preparation which is great and spot-on, I'd also recommend breathing and relaxation techniques. Using a combination of these exercises as part of your preparation will decrease your anxiety and increase your confidence. Focus less on expectations of being evaluated on more on the value of what you have to say. Thanks for reading, I wish you well.

    • punkmarkgirl profile image

      Ashley Bergin 

      3 months ago from san francisco

      Blank brain is the worst!! Today I’m stressing out because it’s my first day back at massage school after taking a year off due to family medical issues. I’m awful with being put on the spot, small talk, or being “observed” by the teacher. In the past, this has caused some distance between myself and the instructors, and with my fellow classmates. They seem to equate my quietness with unwillingness to learn, or snobbery – but that’s not the case at all.

      Once, one of the instructors pulled me aside and asked why I don’t participate in class, and I told him that I learn better by listening, and that my brain doesn’t seem to function if I receive a surprise question that I’m not prepared to answer. He told me that was odd, because my papers and test scores show that I’m quite intelligent. Well… I personally wouldn’t link mind blanking to stupidity – for me, it’s all about preparation. I have no problem with writing, public speaking, or giving presentations to the class - because I can prepare down to the last detail. But if someone puts me on the spot with questions, I stumble over my words. It’s almost like a form of verbal dyslexia!

      The brain blanking is really horrible, and I feel like it’s almost causing me to have social phobia. This doesn’t happen at all with people I’m already friends with – just with new people. It also doesn’t happen on the phone, just in person. I’ve already spent the last week trying to rehearse possible conversations with classmates or teachers in my head. This whole thing makes me feel like some part of my brain is missing, since the simple act of talking doesn’t seem to be this hard for most other people!

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      4 months ago from Washington, DC

      Sounds like you've tried everything and are exhausted after not receiving good results. Maybe taking a break to regroup and rest. Then consider second opinions about other options. Don't give up entirely on treatment. There is support out there, just need to know where to look. If lack of financial resources is a major issue, I suggest checking counseling centers at universities, support groups offered at community organizations, mental health associations (NAMI), or hospitals. Also consider the National Institute of Mental Health. They often have protocols for free treatment. I hope this helps, I wish you well.

    • profile image

      AllyYu01 

      4 months ago

      Ever since I got the flu 2 years ago my brain hasnt been the same. Ive always suffered from depersonlization and derelization. But. Now its 10 times worse due to the fact that i have this thick cloud surrounding my brain

      I cant concentrate i forget where i am im seeing things in the corner of my eye. I have been diagnosed with vetigo. But that doesnt explain the constant confusion. I'm only 19 and im so scared.

      Ive seen so many doctots thearpist who watse my time. Last thearpist i saw she asked me "what can i do to help?" Seriously i wouldnt been here paying you 100 of dollars an hour if i knew the answer. I'm failling college i just cant bring myself to care anymore its hard to write hard to read my vision is blurry. I'm hardly keeping the job i have now. I still live at home and my mom just rolls her eyes at me whenver i mention this insanity. Im thinming it may be black mold we have black mold in our apartment and we cant get rid of it i have no money to move.

      Or schizophrenia which runs in our family. Ive seen a nerugolist who just brushed me off did a quick check up and told me to see a therapist. Im sorry thearpist have wasted my time and money one too many times.

      I'm reaching a breaking point i have no where to go no money and i just want this to end.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      5 months ago from Washington, DC

      Yes, Marlene. They have saved me in many a presentation in the past. Thanks for reading, appreciate your visit!

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 

      5 months ago from USA

      I needed to read this today. Your article reminds me of a very important tool I have used in the past - 3 X 5 cards. They have been true presentation savers for those times when my brain just won't kick into gear.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      5 months ago from Washington, DC

      If your blank brain symptoms are resulting from a diagnosis such as anxiety, depression, ADHD, etc., there are medications to alleviate those symptoms. Only a medical doctor or psychiatrist can evaluate you and determine whether or not medication is indicated. Thanks for reading, I wish you good health.

    • profile image

      mukul 

      5 months ago

      can meditation help to cure a blank brain

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      7 months ago from Washington, DC

      Possibly anxiety about being able to complete the paper is holding you back. You stated that you forget even though you know the material so this tells me it's anxiety. Taking time to breathe as you work may help to decrease your fears about being able to finish the task. Also, extra study to become more familiar with the knowledge will help, too. Hope this helps, thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      xx 

      7 months ago

      while attempting a past paper, i find my mind blank almost suddenly often when i am almost halfway through, and attempting questions becomes impossible even though i know how to attempt them, i forget and get confused. why is this so?

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      7 months ago from Washington, DC

      I'm so glad that you find the article helpful. It sounds lime your stess level is high and confidence is low. Keep using the tips in the article yofind helpful and consider counseling for extra support to address anxiety. You will be okay, thanks for reading. Best to you.

    • profile image

      Magic 

      7 months ago

      Hi... im not really sure what is going on but i had my friend over the weekend and she is very close to my heart... i just went blank i couldn't find anything to talk about with her... i coudnt find anything in my head... like nothing is there... but when i open my mouth it was like river of words... unstoppable and every second word i repeat wogole (polish it mean "at all") where is this come from... what just happend to me... at some point i even had problem with understanding what she said... like someone put over my head glass... we end up sitting in silent... it didnt work well on the end... and she is gone... life... i had very stressful 3 weeks at work and my private life... all problems landed on my head at the same time... i know i have problems with recognize who i'm what is my purpose here... just end up in the patern work... home.. work... home... i feel terrible about myself like im going nowhere... and it will stay like that... do i have some sort of break down... not sure what i should do next... thanks for this article... it give me some answers... all the best M

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      8 months ago from Washington, DC

      Sounds like counseling is in order to reset goals and regain a sense of purpose. Start over by looking at your resume, see where your strengths lie, and go from there. It's never too late, tomorrow is a new beginning. Make a commitment to yourself. Thanks for reading, I wish you well.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      8 months ago from Washington, DC

      Hi Michelle! Thank you for you comment, glad you found the tips helpful. I get foggy myself sometimes, lol. It's very common.

    • Michelle Mollohan profile image

      Michelle Mollohan 

      8 months ago from Looneyville, WV

      Great article! I suffer from brain fog frequently, which I attribute to overthinking and stress. Your article's tips offer some great ideas to help deal with this phenomenon.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      8 months ago from Washington, DC

      It's good you reached out for help to a psychiatrist to rule out any issues. I suggest you also seek counseling to address how the problem has spread from writing to other areas of your life which indicates anxiety. You may benefit from exercises to changes your thought patterns about your life. I wish you well, thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      Vinod Kumar 

      8 months ago

      I was alright but one day I lost control over writing. I was deep in the study room and preparing for exam but suddenly it came to my mind that how my mind controls the writing pattern and literally I lost everything. Then this whole thing stuck in my mind for several months that how I was writing the words and I failed at the peak stage of my life. Still, I struggle with it but it's also spreading to other activities of my daily life like how I speak. Even I went to a psychiatrist but couldn't explain him what I am feeling. My mind sucked my career.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      8 months ago from Washington, DC

      Sounds like short-term memory issues for incidental things to which we don't pay a lot of attention. No worries, unless there is something very important. If so, be more attentive and intentional about remembering to increase your recall. Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      Zubair Rasheedat 

      8 months ago

      I do forget what happen at home immediately i get to office until am about going back home or the way back home. what could be happening

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      8 months ago from Washington, DC

      Absolutely your stress level is impacted your communication. You are on the right track with breathing techniques and tai chi. You have to keep at it over time to see results. I would also suggest adding counseling to talk with someone to help you self-esteem. Verbalizing your fears and inadequacies about performance and self-worth can help move the process along. Be patient with yourself. Expecting quick results will only feed into your anxiety. Thanks for reaching out, I wish you the best.

    • profile image

      dupszy 

      8 months ago

      i am not working at the moment and this is really making me unhappy and affecting my self esteem. Does that put stress on my brain because my brain goes blank all the time that my communication is hindered. Please help me. I am under going some exercises like deep breathing and tai chi to help with anxiety but i am yet to get the effect.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      10 months ago from Washington, DC

      Hi Paul, thanks for reaching out. You hit the nail on the head regarding lack of confidence. Try focusing less on others evaluating your performance and more on making an impression with your knowledge. In other words, base your confidence on your intellectual abilities and the content of what you're sharing to decrease going blank. People will be more impressed with what you're telling them than the anxiety going on inside of you. They most likely don't even notice it. If you believe in the importance of what you're saying, you will pay less attention to yourself. Take some time to study and rehearse the knowledge you want to impart to others; believe you have something of value to share and master it. I hope this helps. Thanks for taking the time to read this article. I wish you well.

    • profile image

      Paul 

      10 months ago

      Hi Janis,

      my mind tends to go blank whenever Id have to prove intellectual abilities, for examample when participating in class, in conversations (even with friends or family members) or when just trying to solve a problem on my own. This problem is bothering me so much that i have become more afraid of my mind going blank than having to prove intellect, which ends up becoming a self-fulfuilling prophicy, a never ending cycle...The fear that my mind could go blank has even started to make me be afraid of just thinking in general...I have a very low level of self-confidence so being too dependent on other's perception of me and constantly having to prove my self-value to myself by performing according to my own standarts is putting a lot of pressure on me...Do you have any advise apart from building my self-esteem to solve this problem in particular? I feel like the video above rather adresses brain fog caused by life-style problems and not by anxiety or over-thinking...Id highly appreciate any help you could offer to me!

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      12 months ago from Washington, DC

      You'll be best served if you find a psychologist or counselor to do a thorough assessment of your issues to get a better read on what you need. Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      .... 

      12 months ago

      I am a student, leading a normal life but I don't know sometimes I feel my mind goes blank. Either I do stupid things or I forget trivial things or data. Though I could remember that while listing to the lecture I thought I would remember this fact but unfortunately, I could not.

      You won't believe but I actually forget very trivial things like the name of my friend or some canteen's name.PLease help. Thanks!

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      12 months ago from Washington, DC

      I recommend you talk to a medical doctor who can evaluate your symptoms. Thank you for reading.

    • profile image

      William Angel 

      12 months ago

      I can't think of anything. This is making me really bored all the time and thinking of suicide to stop myself from getting bored. I think this probably happened when I stopped eating and drinking and my body parts started to diteriate for my survival.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      13 months ago from Washington, DC

      I totally understand. I hear this from clients and it is very annoying, you end up getting angry at yourself because it seems silly. Anxiety takes over and paralyzes you. I recommend seeing a counselor who specializes in breathing and relaxation techniques to decrease anxiety and increase confidence. Thanks for taking the time to read this article and share your experience. I wish you peace.

    • profile image

      timihengs 

      13 months ago

      it's a good thing I saw these. at least it's a plus. I find it so difficult to speak in a gathering I might be listening to everyones convo but when it's my turn to contribute my heart starts beating fast and my brain become empty .. seems like a doubt my self and feels like whatam about to say will be total nonsense. so I stay mute and just say sorry but I have no contribution to the conversation. It's so annoying I find my self in these part. I get home and get angry over my situation but it's something I can't share out with coligues. I am highly pissed

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      13 months ago from Washington, DC

      It's scary not to understand what's happening, especially when you have children to care for and a job to do. I encourage you to destructor for an assessment of your symptoms and a good therapist to address anxiety.

    • profile image

      Mhe 

      13 months ago

      Im a mother of two kids. I dont know what is happening to me right now. I am a nurse but cannot asses myself i really cant explain what is happening to me. Im far away from my kids. Im an ofw everytime someone share ideas i cant relate with them.. Everytime some one ask my opinion my brain is so blank.. I studied for how many years but no retains on my mind. Im confused.. I feel like a robot at my work no communication with my boss because evertime ive been ask i cant answer back..

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      13 months ago from Washington, DC

      I'm glad you're under medical care although it seems to be giving you no relief. I'm not a doctor and strongly suggest you ask your doctor to re-evaluate the efficacy of your treatment. In addition, consider a second opinion. I would also suggest adding regular practice of deep breathing and meditation to your treatment regimen. It will help with relaxation and anxiety. I wish you well, thanks for reading this article.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      14 months ago from Washington, DC

      Wonderful! So glad to know the tips were helpful to you. I appreciate the feedback, thanks for taking the time to read it.

    • profile image

      Shrishti 

      14 months ago

      Thanku so much because I was totally confused what should I do but when I read it than I understood what should I do

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      15 months ago from Washington, DC

      Follow tips, see your doctor for medical evaluation. Thanks for reading.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      17 months ago from Washington, DC

      Thanks so much for taking the time to share your experience. I see you've tried everything and still struggle. I'm not familiar with any apps or online trainings. I would suggest you continue to let your upbeat attitude get you through, a day at a time. Be kind to yourself using self care activities and don't sweat the small stuff. Thanks for reading. Have a good week!

    • profile image

      Ajack8572 

      17 months ago

      Thank you for this! I am always dealing with Brain Fog.. I've had people tell me I'm full of it when I try to explain I REALLY DO NOT KNOW WHAT I WAS SAYING/DOING! I have dealt with this as long as I can remember HA NO REALLY.. Its been a constant struggle, fear & hatred. I've never got it fully under control. I'v done the Dr.s, Med's, Electro Therpy, Clinics, been diagnosed all that you listed & a couple more, yup. I have been embarrassed too many times to count. I DO however try my best to make fun of myself as you said, but sometimes it hurts. I can't keep relationships, mostly because they won't take time to understand me & THAT hurts! None ever takes me serious. How can I keep peace within myself & help others see ME for ME?! & IS there any like free online training exercises or apps or something that I can use to gain control of my thought process? Again thank you for writing this. I'm gong to print this & keep it with me.. MAYBE I can just hand a person a copy & say "READ THIS & YOU'LL CATCH A CLUE!?" It sure sounds good.. LOL Have a blessed day!

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      19 months ago from Washington, DC

      Whatever you choose to do with the rest of your life, sounds like you could benefit from talking it out with counselor. I wish you the best with your family.

    • profile image

      sunituls@gmail.com 

      19 months ago

      Got married at 20. Today 50. Always blamed for ego attitude being loud, extrovert. Loser in all years. Still laughed to the best. Today broken. Nobody as family friends or known. Alofe with husband who is innocent guy with simplicity. Son over enthusiastic but busy with his own thoughts. Do not know what to do the rest life.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      20 months ago from Washington, DC

      Memory issues as adults age is expected. If she has concerns she should talk with her doctor.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      20 months ago from Washington, DC

      You're welcome, Tiffany. Thanks for reading.

    • profile image

      Farnoosh 

      20 months ago

      Hi

      My grandma is 72

      Sometime's her mind goes blank

      For example plenty of time she says "year" instead of "day"

      Or something like this..

      I wanna make her get better but i don't know what should i do !

      Can you please help meee

    • profile image

      Tiffany 

      20 months ago

      Excellent article. Thank you Janis for the insight!

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      20 months ago from Washington, DC

      Sounds like you could benefit from a thorough evaluation by a medical doctor or neural psychologist to see what recommends for treatment they can offer. I wish you well.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      20 months ago from Washington, DC

      Clement, have you talked to a therapist or seen a psychologist for an evaluation? It may be helpful to start with your doctor for a recommendation on whether counseling for anxiety and depression or a neurological evaluation could rule out any problems. Thank you for reading, I wish you the best.

    • profile image

      Clement babantah 

      20 months ago

      12years ago I was admitted to study Electrical Electronic Engineering in higher institution,within a week I began to experience hotness and serious movement in my brain which lead to discontinuation of the programme and uptil now I have not achieve anything in life,i have being moving from one point to other looking for solution to my problem.pls what would I do

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      21 months ago from Washington, DC

      Sounds like you could definitely benefit from addressing your anxiety and practicing relaxation techniques. A good therapist can help. I wish you the best.

    • profile image

      Claraf 

      21 months ago

      I used to have a brilliant memory but now I don't remember what I said or what others told me. Also, my mind goes blank most of the time when I'm under pressure or talking with colleagues in a meeting. I can't focus when I read or listen to someone when they are talking. I'm always anxious and my heartbeat accelerates. I feel really frustrated.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      22 months ago from Washington, DC

      Cameron, I've never heard of this but I'm glad it appears to be under control. Maybe a thorough neurological assessment by a doctor would be in order. I would also explore what stressful events were/are going on at the time an episodes hits. My first guess is that it's anxiety related. I wish you the best.

    • profile image

      Cameron 

      22 months ago

      Not sure how to word this. Every once in a while I will be doing something and my mind goes blank, and all I see is black (if this makes sense.)

      This happened during my sophomore year. I would be walking through the halls after Geometry class and my my mind went blank nearly everyday, i saw all black, and when I was able to see things again I began to wonder simple things such as: my name, the time, date, where I work, income, etc.

      Though this was very frequent 4 years ago, this only happens once every few months now if even. I'm wondering if anyone else has experienced this that knows their trigger. Also wondering how normal this is.

      Thanks!

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      23 months ago from Washington, DC

      Thank you, Adam, for your inquiry. I'm glad the article resonated with you. I suggest you get referrals from your doctors and follow through with any suggestions they may offer for more testing, perhaps a neurological exam and/or counseling. I wish you well, Adam.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      23 months ago from Washington, DC

      Absolutely, very common among many. Thanks for stopping by and reading.

    • Harmel profile image

      Melody Gibbons 

      23 months ago from Staff Ave Cochranton Pa 16314

      Very informative. It's good to know that you are not alone.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      23 months ago from Washington, DC

      Hi Sagar, it is clear you have a lot of symptoms that need medical evaluation, treatment, and monitoring. I suggest you make an appointment with an experienced, qualified doctor who specializes in anxiety. You've taken a huge first step in educating yourself about your symptoms. Thank you for taking the time to read this article. I hope it was informative.

    • profile image

      Sagar 

      24 months ago

      Hi Janis,

      I am Sagar from. I am suffering from Recurring panic attacks, sleep problems, changes in appetite, dizziness, headaches, poor concentration and memory, fatigue, negative self-talk, and feeling overwhelmed and depressed from 3 years.

      Bellow are the few symptoms I have noted by observing myself -

      1) Feeling heavy head and tired through out the day.

      2) I wake up each morning completely zombie-mode and that feeling would remain throughout the entirety of my day

      3) I feel as though I had no control over myself. I loose drive and motivation. I loose a lot of confidence.

      4) I feel a constant irritation in my head....like pressure almost.

      5) Mind always in racing condition - what ever i am trying to tell or write that overlap.

      6) I easily get confused what to say what to do ... Like confuse to say yesterday or tomorrow, he and she ...

      7) I get panic easily.. if someone ask something i get panic even though i know that and my mind get exhausted and i cant able to reply properly.

      8) I easily get frustrated .. Example - Lets say i am reading somthing . After reading 4 to 5 lines i get irritate and move to next line .. then next and end of the chapter. Loosing of patience.

      9 ) I am not able to recall things even though i know things. Like i cant remember names , words , for which i cant able to complete sentence.

      10) I cant get sleep easily. But feeling sleepy mood always.

      11) I can’t concentrate on anything. Always something is going on mind, even though i try to stop thinking and concentrate on one thing but i never able to concentrate on one thing. Example - I just search for doctor for anxiety problem, simultenuiously my mind is thinking what i will say there, is it able to care, will the doctor cheat me.

      12) Feelings of panic, fear, and uneasiness

      13) Muscle tension near leg

      14) Feeling excessive stress on mind.

      Please help me out to come out from this....

      Thanks,

      Sagar

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 years ago from Washington, DC

      Sounds like you should consider a medical evaluation to see if you need treatment and counseling. Thanks for reading this article.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 years ago from Washington, DC

      You are very welcome, Mary Ann. Glad you found it helpful, thanks for taking the time to read it and leave a comment.

    • profile image

      Mary Ann Benson 

      2 years ago

      This makes sense. I had a stroke, and this is what happened to my brain for about 3 months. Then it slowly came back. That was in 2008. Still working on it. But when I am under a lot of stress, and stressors. My mind goes blank. It just shuts down, and feels hallow on the inside. I can function, eat, drink, walk, and talk. But don't ask me questions, yell at me, as I won't have an answer for you. When in this mode. My brain is telling me, it is taking a break from all the incoming information, and that it needs a rest. Next day, is like it never happened. I felt like a walking wall. Absorb nothing, and leave nothing. Brain resting, do not disturb. Not foggy. Although I do know what that is too. Most times its cause I don't drink enough water. Very good article. Glad I found it. Thank you.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 years ago from Washington, DC

      Thank you for sharing this information, Li. I appreciate your visit and comment.

    • profile image

      Li 

      2 years ago

      I remember this feeling quite alot before i realized the truth about the really dangerous fluoride in our water and i would urge anyone to look into how powerful the effects this chemical as on the brain especially the pineal gland. Research the pineal gland and how to quickly de-calcify it. very important you do this,very important to understand whats going on an to clear the fog.Check out "what is fluoride doing to my brain" also "what is my Pineal Gland and its uses" and " The ways to detox from fluoride" all video's that are easy to understand and interesting, i found that the video's motivated me when i understood more about the third eye or "the seat of the soul" dont be put off by ancient explanations, its basically just explaining how you see things with your imagination through the pineal gland, you cannot see without an eye.Please dont let my explanation put you off.Ive never had such a rapid awakening from brain fog.This techniuqe was used by the nazi's in the camps, they put fluoride in the water to dumb down the prisoners so they would act docile thus giving them no trouble.

      I sincerely hope i atleast one person will go and learn what ive advised, it is very easy to watch small video clips with doctors and scientists telling you whats been happening to you under through the water supply. Please look. ive nothing to gain apart from bettering my fellow men/women.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 years ago from Washington, DC

      Anxiety certainly can make you feel helpless as if nothing can get better. I hope you can find some help, maybe an evaluation by a doctor who can recommend alternative treatments to give you some relief. I wish you well. Thank you for taking the time to read this article.

    • profile image

      Mohammad 

      2 years ago

      Thanks for those good tips but I don't think they can help me! most of the time when I want to explain something to someone, I can't remember it even if it seems so easy, sometimes all of it,sometimes parts of it . I know my severe anxiety causes that,when I begin to talk to people and I'm so helpless. Unfortunately , my problem is getting worse everyday and even when I'm at home and nobody's there, suddenly I begin to feel so nervous something like panic attack especially when I want to remember something or review something for myself and I know it's because of those bad experiences I had in front of people. I feel I'm losing my mind, it's a very awful experience. I ask myself how can I find a job with this terrible mind, with this damn anxiety? How can I have a normal life? Just God can help me!

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 years ago from Washington, DC

      It's good to know you found this article useful and that it touched you in such a profound way. Glad to be of help. Take good care.

    • profile image

      arun 

      2 years ago

      thank you, that was very useful, got me tears in my eyes as some parts talked about exactly what i am going through right now.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 years ago from Washington, DC

      Excellent, Marlene. Glad to know this was helpful. My brain is getting worse with age. :) Thanks for stopping by.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 

      2 years ago from USA

      My blank brain tends to occur when I am caught in a situation where I have to stand up and speak, like, when I visit a new church and the pastor calls on me to stand up and introduce myself. I have been known to forget my own name! It's embarrassing. I feel better knowing I am not alone. Thank you for clearing up a few things and for giving tips for helping solve this issue. One thing I do is keep a notepad with me at all times.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 years ago from Washington, DC

      The only thorough way to know what might be going on is to talk to your doctor, share your symptoms and see if a neurological exam is needed.

    • profile image

      Linda 

      2 years ago

      I get brain fog quite often but usually when I'm asked a question, I will become hot, sweaty and cannot think of the answer to a simple question like who is the Vice President ? It will take several minutes for the answer to come to me. Or I will read something and cannot remember what I just read . I'm very worried . What is this?

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      2 years ago from Washington, DC

      Not sure what that may be so I cannot answer your specific question. If a child is having frequent blank brain, that needs to be assessed by a pediatrician. Thanks for reading and for the question.

    • profile image

      Shazzia 

      2 years ago

      Hi my son is 6 n he has started getting blank like10 to 12 times a day. Will this effect him in future will he be able to drive cars what should I do to stop this

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 years ago from Washington, DC

      It's very common for probably millions of people every day, AshlyChristen, even without a diagnosis. It happens to me daily. It would happen a lot between me and my sister during phone conversations. We'd just laugh it off. Thanks for stopping by.

    • AshlyChristen profile image

      Ashly Christen 

      3 years ago from Illinois

      this happens to me and my sister all the time! It really is an inconvenience. She does have fibromyalsia but i do not.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 years ago from Washington, DC

      You're very welcome, Rabadi. It happens to me several times a day, lol! Thank you for your visit.

    • Rabadi profile image

      3 years ago from New York

      Happens to the best of us lol thank you for this interesting article!

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 years ago from Washington, DC

      I hope you find it helpful, ThatMommyBlogger. You've been through a lot. I wish you the best.

    • ThatMommyBlogger profile image

      Missy 

      3 years ago from The Midwest

      I'm bookmarking this. I have post-concussion syndrome and deal with ongoing memory problems. They used to be severe, but they're getting much better. It's been almost 2 years since my brain injury, though. Things were terrible at first.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 years ago from Washington, DC

      I appreciate that, word55. But I do all of that and still have brain lapses, lol. I think it comes with too much multi-tasking and age! Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

    • word55 profile image

      Al Wordlaw 

      3 years ago from Chicago

      Thanks jan, when you are very active, having multiple duties and responsibilities in life it would seem extremely difficult to have a brain lapse as long as proper rest is gotten and healthy eating is applied as well as having a closer relationship with Father, God!

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 years ago from Washington, DC

      Thank you.

    • profile image

      Bob 

      3 years ago

      If your brain is empty try storing this it might help I have the same issue but mine is blank because I reach to a point when all I think are this things and it has solve my problems and worries 1 love peace and family 2 is past present and future 3 trust believe and have faith 4 truth acceptance and choice 5 Soul heart and mind 6 Forgive help and give 7 is the Father the Son and the Holy Spirit 8 is reality belief and change. And the four pillars of the cube positivity pray hope and strength. Memorize it and it's yours

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 years ago from Washington, DC

      You're welcome, Courtney. Thnanks for stopping by and taking the time to read it. Glad you found it helpful.

    • pumpkincat210 profile image

      Courtney Rhodes 

      3 years ago

      Thanks for sharing, I always seem to have nothing to say in a conversation, especially the surprise kind, but I am good at talking in front of a large group, which I dont often get to do. i found your hub comforting,

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