Tips on how to work smarter.
Yes to blue sky days every day! (Photo: tomwang / www.123rf.com)
1. Boost productivity at work: Have eggs with toast for breakfast
Order a sunny side up at brekkie. Egg-white proteins activate orexin cells in our body, prompting the secretion of the hormone, orexin or hypocretin, a stimulant responsible for telling the body to stay awake. Best of all, they do the job more efficiently than any other nutrient, say scientists from the University of Cambridge.
Starting your day with vitamin B-rich foods such as whole-grain bread, meat or beans could also lower your frustration at work. In a three-month study done by Swinburne University of Technology, people who included vitamin B in their diets were about 20 per cent less stressed than those who didn’t. This translates to a lower risk of health problems such as heart disease, depression and anxiety, says lead author, Professor Con Stough.
2. Boost productivity at work: Water a plant
Take care of your leafy desk companion. According to a Washington State University study, office greenery can stoke your reaction time by 12 per cent. What’s more, some plant buddies have been shown to improve air quality in just 24 hours – lowering levels of carbon dioxide as well as volatile organic compounds, which can cause eye and nose irritation, headaches as well as other ailments.
3. Boost productivity at work: Keep warm
Blasting the aircon because of the ridiculous heatwave outside? Don’t.
You’re better off working in a warmer environment, say researchers at Cornell University. They discovered that when temperatures were raised from 20 deg C to 25 deg C, workers not only typed more, but also did so with fewer errors. (If your workplace has a central air conditioning system, wrapping yourself up in a shawl should do the trick.)
4. Boost productivity at work: Look at the bigger picture
Switching from an 18-inch monitor to a 24-inch one can help you perform the same task two and a half hours faster, saving you up to 76 days in a year. It’s especially useful if you tend to toggle between multiple windows, a study by the University of Utah has found.
But if you can’t choose your own hardware at work, bring a laptop and place it next to your desktop. You’ll still reap the beneﬁts – the more screen space, the better, say researchers.
5. Boost productivity at work: Use Tuesdays more efficiently
Tuesday’s the most productive day of the week, with almost six in 10 executives stating that it’s when employees get the most work done, according to a survey by Accountemps, an international staffing company.
Since Monday acts as a “catch-up day” following the weekend, many see Tuesday as a chance to focus their efforts and create momentum for the week ahead, says Max Messmer, chairman of Accountemps and author of Managing Your Career for Dummies. Time to tackle that stack of reports you’ve been sitting on!