5 bad habits sabotaging your workplace productivity

Work efficiently by cutting out these common pitfalls that hold you back.

1. Skipping your workout and sitting all day
A healthy body is the key to a healthy mind. When you exercise regularly, you keep illness at bay which increases your productivity. Morning and afternoon workouts boost one’s cognitive abilities like concentration, focus, memory, mental stamina, etc, all of which amount to better productivity at work. Plus, exercise being a natural stimulator, helps in releasing serotonin, a neurotransmitter that contributes to a feeling of wellbeing and happiness. This starts your day off on a good note warding off stress and depression. Exercise also gives you energy to stay more healthy and alert at work. On the flip side, sitting in one space all day will make you feel bored and lead to tension in the back, neck, and shoulders. So take frequent breaks in between to walk or simply climb stairs while going for meetings. This will give your body and mind a break.

2. Missing breakfast
We get so worked up about the day ahead that we sometimes skip the most important meal of the day, not realising it will only result in poor focus and concentration. Because you’ve skipped breakfast your body will be low on energy and will tire soon, both physically and mentally. Also, low sugar levels due to a missed breakfast further escalates the problem by making it harder for us to concentrate. So it’s important to feed your body the right nutrients for a happier and productive day at work. A diet rich in high fibre carbohydrates and lean proteins increases the metabolism and blood sugar levels. However, avoid consuming sugar-laden treats or low fibre carbs as these don’t do much for better concentration and performance.

3. Sacrificing sleep for work
While working long hours might get the work done faster, the quality of work will suffer due to lack of sleep. You need least seven to eight hours of sleep a day to give your body and mind adequate time to rest and rejuvenate. A good night’s sleep increases happiness and focus, all of which lead to a better performance at work. Also, an inadequate amount of sleep drains us of energy and pushes us to skip exercising in the morning, which again is something to be avoided. Lack of sleep also takes a heavy toll on the prefrontal cortex, a region in the brain responsible for complex cognitive behaviour like decision making and executive functioning. So cutting down sleep is a big no-no.

4. Having your phone near your bed
This is a dangerous practice you need to stop right away. By keeping your phone close, you’re tempting fate. You’re more likely to check emails, messages, etc, at regular intervals which will disturb your sleep patterns. Also, the artificial blue light that smartphones emit is known to interfere and disturb the hormone melatonin, produced by the brain for peaceful sleep. Constant exposure to this blue light affects the production of melatonin, disturbing your sleeping habits, directly leading to lethargy and poor productivity at work.

5. Perfectionism
Striving for perfection is often seen as a positive. But taking it too far can do more harm than good as it leads to unnecessary stress. In order to achieve perfectionism, we often start fussing over minute details and work under pressure, which is the worst position to be in. Stress is never conducive to productivity or good work. Yes, of course, you need to take your work seriously. But it is also important to cut yourself some slack and distribute responsibilities and take assistance when required.

Photograph: Photoduet/

Categories:   Lifestyle, Work Buzz


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