The health of your mind and body has a direct correlation with your productivity and the quality of your work. Some of the most highly productive people in the world are also some of the healthiest. Even The CDC will inform you that “in general, healthy employees are more productive.” However, between balancing work, family, and social life it is often difficult to find the time to focus on our health. But do not fear! There are a few simple habits that you can incorporate into your day to boost your productivity, mood, and general well-being.
Get Up Earlier
Getting a jumpstart on the day is one of the easiest ways to increase your productivity. Numerous studies have shown that most highly successful people are early risers, with most billionaires waking up around 4:00 am, according to Psychology Today. Waking up just an hour before your usual alarm can give you extra time to read, journal, meditate, cook a healthy breakfast, or spend a few extra minutes setting up your day for success.
Get Quality Sleep
While waking up early can set up your day for success, the real journey to a successful day begins the night before. Many people believe that because they are sleeping the recommended 8 hours of sleep they should be waking up feeling refreshed and ready for the day. However, not all sleep is created equally. In order to get a “good night's sleep” experts say that you need to fall asleep within 30 minutes and stay asleep for more of the night. This quality of sleep can be affected by stress, lighting, room temperature, nighttime routine, and daily intake of stimulants. To increase your productivity and overall quality of life you must be getting quality rest during these hours. Tip: Waking up earlier is also proven to help with the quality of your sleep.
Stick to a Routine
From sleeping routine to daily routine, keeping each day's routine similar to the day before is important for increasing productivity. Going to sleep and waking up at roughly the same time each day is one of the easiest ways to get your routine on a positive track. Choosing to eat each meal at roughly the same time each day is another simple habit that can increase your overall health and aid your body to properly digest your food and extract the nutrients needed to keep you full and focused all day. A simple way to ensure that you are sticking to a routine is to time block your day. This means taking a few moments to write out exactly what tasks need to be completed and when you are going to complete them. This habit will not only add to your productivity but will also help to ensure you stay organized and meet your deadlines.
Move Your Body
A healthy body equals a healthy mind. Sitting at a desk all day is one of the most detrimental things that you can do to your health. Use that extra hour in the mornings, or at night, to get up and go for a walk, do some yoga, or even a few jumping jacks. Bonus points if you can use this time to exercise outside as nothing is better for your mind and body than some fresh air and sunlight. Another easy way to get your body moving is to time block in a few minutes each hour to get up and do a few quick exercises. With consistency, you will begin to see incredible results from committing to just a few minutes a day. Getting up and moving can also help to improve your mood and energy levels helping you to become your most productive self throughout the day. Regular exercise can also help to promote quality sleep, which by now you know is important.
Focus on Incorporating Whole Foods Into Your Diet
Instead of reaching for that candy bar, soda, or coffee for your mid-day pick me up, focus on incorporating healthy, whole snacks. Tip: if it has more than a few ingredients on the label, it probably doesn't fall into this category. “Adequate nutrition can raise productivity levels by 20 percent on average” according to WHO. This is because healthy foods contain vital vitamins and nutrients that help to stimulate our cognitive functions. While we're on the topic of nutrition, don't forget the importance of staying hydrated. Experts recommend that the average adult drink 75-150 ounces of water daily.
Take Time for Mindfulness and Meditation
Meditation is one of the oldest practices for improving your health, and there's a reason that this practice has stood the test of time! Science says that meditation can help to decrease stress, enhance creativity, and improve memory and focus. Along with increasing blood flow to your brain which can help increase productivity. The amount of time that you should set aside each day to practice meditation and mindfulness varies from person to person, but a good number to aim for is 20 minutes a day.
About the writer, Brenda Geer