Life Hacks That Lead to Increased Work Productivity

by Matthew Ripaldi on May 8, 2017

productive businessman using life hacks to improve productivityLife hacking is a concept that I hear talked about regularly in the professional sector. Usually, these hacks are geared towards increasing productivity while in the office – apps that keep your internet browsing to a minimum or the most effective way to create a to-do list, for example.

But I’ve found that there are life hacks outside of the office that translate directly to increased work productivity in the office. These are four that I practice every day.

Make sleep a priority.

You’ve probably heard your doctor tell you to get more sleep at least once in your life, but so many professionals that I know still refuse to take that advice to heart. After all, who needs sleep when a few extra cups of coffee can get you through the day, right?

Science tells us otherwise. A British study by the Royal Society for Public Health found that consistent poor health can lead to increased health risks for things like coronary heart disease and high blood pressure, and a 2007 study from UC Berkeley found that sleep deprivation has an impact on the parts of the brain that handle mood and concentration.

In short, missing sleep can impact your work and your health. It might be tempting to watch one more TV show before bed, but your brain and body will thank you for turning off the lights.

Read books.

We are inundated with words in the internet age. Social media, blog posts, news articles – we spend huge portions of our days reading on our phones and on our computers.

Reading a book is a proven stress reliever and vocabulary booster. In fact, 30 minutes of uninterrupted reading can improve your ability to concentrate. Perhaps most importantly, studies have shown that reading can have a positive effect on our brains as we age.

Stretch, especially your hips.

Most of us sit at a desk for most of our work day. Then we get home and sit while we eat dinner, then sit on the couch to watch some TV or (if you’re following my advice) read a book. With all that sitting, it’s no wonder why most of us deal with tight hips and sore backs.

Aside from the physical impact of tight hips, our pelvis is also a place where our bodies seem to store stress and emotion. If you’ve ever taken a yoga class and felt a surge of emotion during a hip-opening exercise, now you know why.

To combat stress and improve your mobility, take some time every day to get out of your chair and stretch. Even 10 to 15 minutes at a time can work wonders for both your physical and emotional health.

Take stock in what you’re thankful for.

Whether it’s your work life or your home life, there will always be times when frustration reaches a boiling point, when things feel like they’re snowballing and the universe has it out for you personally.

What I’ve found works wonders in those situations is to stop, take a deep breath, and remember the things in my life that I am lucky to have. When I take a broader look at my life and all the good in it, it helps to put my stresses in perspective and makes them more manageable.

But rather than waiting until you’re stressed to call in this trick, I recommend taking a few minutes every morning to stop and think about what you’re thankful for. It can be over morning coffee, in the car on the way to the office, or while you’re out walking the dog. Anywhere that gives you a moment for quiet reflection is an opportunity to frame your entire day in a positive light.

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