The Challenge: Maintaining productivity at work and other areas in life to consistently deliver great results.
The Science: Because the human brain is hardwired for habits, we can take advantage of this fact and start practicing the right ones daily.
The Solution: Enumerated below are 8 essential habits that focus on your health and well-being you need to follow today.
In a world that’s getting busier by the day, productivity is on the minds of many. But instead of forcing yourself to stay at work for endless hours and wearing yourself out to the bone, you can use your mind and body to the optimum and increase your productivity in the process.
What can you do to become more productive? Well, becoming more productive is just a matter of developing the right habits that would help keep you healthy, so that you can stay active throughout the day. We’ve listed them below. Read on.
1. Take work breaks to reduce screen time
Get away from yourself and your computer, or whatever it is you’re doing. A ten-minute break would do wonders for reducing your eye strain and bringing back your focus and concentration. Take the opportunity to do some stretching to release tension from your back and shoulders. Drink some tea. Grab a power nap. Visit one of the office water dispensers in the break room.
If you think that taking a break at work delays the completion of your tasks, you’re totally mistaken. According to an article on The Huffington Post, making time for breaks serves as a distraction that allows you to inject more creativity and passion into a task, once you get back to it after the break.
2. Eat at regular times during the day
Make sure that you eat healthy and at regular times during the day. When you skip a meal, your blood sugar levels dip and this can cause you to experience headaches and irritability. Moreover, blood sugar fluctuations that occur for a long period can put you at risk of getting type 2 diabetes and other problems related to our metabolism.
Skipping a healthy breakfast or a well-deserved lunch break at work can be tempting due to time constraints on your part. Avoid this as much as possible. Remember that your health is a priority. Take it for granted, and your performance suffers.
3. Practice healthy snacking habits
You may think that fast food is a nice snack, but it’s never good for your health. The chips, fries, the bagels sitting on your table, and Pop Tarts – all of them must go! When consumed more often, these foods put you at risk for several problems like headaches, obesity, insulin resistance, and even depression.
Better yet, choose some healthy foods to snack on such as a bowl of oatmeal with blueberries and nuts or apple slices with almond butter. These foods do not cause blood sugar spikes, and thus they keep you satisfied and in a positive mood.
4. Make time for daily exercise
One of the best ways to improve productivity and to look after your physical health is to stay active. Before you leave home for work, pursue some form of regular physical exercise. Not only will exercise relieve any stress you may be suffering from, but it will also give you an alternative focus to your work. Build up your regime gradually over a few weeks if necessary.
Some of the best exercises that build up your stamina to tackle work and boost your concentration and happiness levels are cardiovascular workouts like running, jogging, and sprinting. Think you don’t have time for exercise before going to the office? No problem. Find opportunities that allow you to move more, such as taking the stairs and parking far from your office building.
5. Practice good posture
Work can be stressful to your body, and bad posture can add to the stress and tension. If your posture is not optimal, your muscles will have the tendency to work harder to keep you upright and balanced. This leads to the tightening of some muscles. Over time, this can impair your body – your back and spine.
Instead of sitting in an awkward position, try to sit straight. You can use an ergonomic chair that mimics the natural form of your spine. If you can’t get one today, at least use a chair with an adequate height – one that ensures you maintain eye level with your computer.
6. Stay hydrated throughout the day
Every living body cell needs water to perform its vital functions. Water aids in the digestion and absorption of nutrients, such as vitamins. It transports oxygen to the cells and removes both liquid and solid wastes to make you feel more energetic and focused during work hours.
Since our bodies are made up of 60% water, we need to replenish it by drinking at least 3l of water per day. That’s equivalent to 13 cups of water. Remember that you’re losing water from your body not only after urinating, but also through sweating and breathing. A good practice would be to bring a bottle with you at work. Take some sips throughout the day to keep your mind refreshed.
7. Maintain the work-life balance
Don’t spend all your time on work alone. Enjoy doing your hobbies with your loved ones. This will give you a moment to forget all the stressful things that you have encountered during the week. While anyone who seeks productivity can be tempted to go overtime or bring work at home, resist doing so.
By maintaining a work-life balance, you lessen your risk for being susceptible to burnouts. You’ll also experience less health problems since you’ll become more stable and happy – mentally and emotionally. You will appreciate the boost in creativity and concentration you’ll get by making time for your personal needs.
8. Getting a breath of fresh air outside
There are also some other ways you can get a breath of fresh air outside. Walking in a shop or supermarket if it’s not too far would be a good start. Taking a short walk in the park early in the morning is another great way to go about it.
During weekends, try not to stay indoors for hours. Go out and enjoy the beauty of nature. You can accomplish this by gardening, going for a hike with your buddies, or simply spending a calming afternoon in a nearby park. Fresh air clears your mind and decreases the levels of your stress hormones.
By developing these essential habits that focus on your health and well-being, your productivity level will soar to new heights. Indeed, the real secret to becoming more productive is not to try harder, but to work smarter. Working smarter means using the right techniques that won’t burn you out, so that you can always give it your best!