Ever have those days when you can’t get your head into anything? Where you find yourself wandering into the kitchen to make yet another cup of tea, or exhibiting an uncharacteristic interest in cleaning?
Now that so many of us are working from home, we have an increasing array of things to distract us; from snacking to mopping, napping to channel hopping. The methods by which we can procrastinate are endless. Plus, there’s no boss looking over our shoulder to witness this lack of productivity.
Now, whilst I am wholeheartedly against the conventional office type ethos which has us tied to our desks for 8 hours a day, (this is not a healthy way to live), I do also appreciate the need to accomplish things and get stuff done.
Recently a friend shared with me a technique she uses, which involves setting a timer for a short period of time, in her case 25 mins, and then choosing something on your ‘To Do’ list to work on for the duration.
Breaking things down into bite-sized chunks makes them more manageable. Whether it’s work or exercise, we all have days when we’re just not feeling it, and therefore, the more achievable we make our goals, the more likely we are to reach them.
So decide on a period of time long enough to be productive but short enough not to be intimidating. Once you’ve chosen your task and set your timer, you just get stuck in, knowing that in a relatively short amount of time you can stop and review your progress or, in other words, give yourself a great big pat on the back!
Now I’d like to take this idea one step further…
How about, after every chunk of work you complete – be it 25 or 60 minutes, you do 5 minutes of exercise, or take an exercise ‘snack’ as my favourite doctor, Rangan Chatterjee would say, (his Four Pillar Plan book is a must-read).
If you are sitting at a desk, in front of a screen, it is so important to take regular breaks. To stretch and move your body.
So, it could be a 5 minute blast of HIIT, (check out my Mini HIIT videos on Instagram for inspiration), a power walk around the block, or a gentle yoga flow.
Whatever you choose, moving your body feels great and helps prevent muscle tightness. It also increases blood flow to the brain enabling you to return to your next chunk of work feeling refreshed, invigorated and ready to engage!