‘Brain fog’ – your performance killer in esports

You begin your day as usual – same game, same settings, same environment. You start your game with good results, you are reaching your targets and you feel in control when all of a sudden things go backwards. It usually begins with a stupid mistake or two. You try to ‘brush it off’ and continue with your game. But as you continue playing, you realize that you’ve ‘on an automated mode’, disconnected from the game’s objectives and all of a sudden you start feeling overwhelmed. Your mind starts to wander into different directions and it seems harder and harder for you to regain your focus and control. On top of that you feel like your reflexes are betraying you and you become slow and continue doing mistakes that you know you could easily avoid.

What is ‘brain fog’?

If you have had similar days to the one described above, you could be experiencing a combination of symptoms called ‘brain fog’. Brain fog has different symptoms and intensity with different people. The above described scenario is just one of the many possible. Usually brain fog doesn’t go away easily. In most cases, it is experienced as inability to make good decisions, lack of focus and concentration, feelings of exhaustion (could be physical, emotional or both). In addition to that you might experience the need to consume more caffeine and sweets.

What might be the causes of ‘brain fog’?

Since ‘brain fog’ is not a medical condition, it doesn’t have specific causes that alone might lead to this experience. However, there is enough evidence to support that high levels of stress on a regular basis, sleep deprivation and poor diet could contribute to brain fog. However, keep in mind that there are always individual differences and the duration and intensity of the symptoms could vary. 

How to reduce ‘brain fog’ symptoms? 

First, you really need to do some ‘research’ about your daily routine for the past several weeks, months. Brain fog symptoms usually have a history related to your habits. For some people improving even a single habit could lead to dramatic positive change in brain fog symptoms. 

Revisit your quality and quantity of sleep

Good sleep routine is the first thing you need to get control of. Continuous sleep deprivation harms you both physically and mentally. Combined with extensive hours of gaming or physical exhaustion and you have the perfect environment for the brain fog to develop.

Improve your diet and exercise routine

This tip or advise might seem overused, however poor diet and lack of exercise are often contributing to high levels of anxiety and stress and poor cognitive abilities like focus and attention. Overconsuming sugar and caffeine is a habit a lot of gamers develop. Yet, there is enough evidence to support that such diet is not only harmful to you mentally but also physically. 

Learn and practice relaxation techniques

It might sound strange, but most people don’t know how to relax properly. Today it’s very hard to detach yourself completely from electronic devices, social media and gaming. In fact a lot of players would use these methods as a method to relax. However, most of the time these methods would exhaust you even more. Instead, try different guided meditations or other relaxing activities that are proven to work and don’t require electronic devices.

If you are struggling with brain fog and you feel like you are stuck in this cursed circle, contact me at and get your first session FREE.

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CS:GO, esports, esports-psychology, Gaming, tips-and-tricks
About George
George Atanasov is a mental performance consultant, currently working in professional esports. He has experience consulting elite athletes and esports players. If you want to improve your mental game sign up for a free initial session with him by messaging at

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