People often ask how I manage to get so much done (actually, I don’t achieve as much as I’d like, but that’s another story). One thing that helps is the way I break every hour for just a couple of minutes. It’s long been known that sitting at the keyboard, or bending over the desk with pen in hand, can quickly reduce your performance in every area. Far from making you more effective, working without a break is counter-productive.
I stop only for a couple of minutes each time, but I return to the work refreshed and with eyes no longer tired from staring at that screen or sheet of paper. What do I do in the break? Maybe run up and down the stairs a couple of times, pop into the back bedroom to watch birds on the feeder at the corner of the garden shed, stand and gaze at the passing clouds. Any one of a number of undemanding occupations during this brief break helps rest your mind and your eyes can focus on the distance instead of close-up. And it’s so easy to do.
The aid I use for this is a timer, which I re-set to the hour as soon as its alarm (a wolf’s howl preceded by a few crow calls) alerts me to the end of each hour. Easily installed and set, it’s a useful reminder and may well help you with your own productivity.
Here’s a link to the Howler Timer I use on my Mac.
And, as the one above is suitable only for Macs, here’s a link to the timer I recently installed on my wife’s laptop.
Install the alarm, set it away and see how it affects your output!
Here’s to happy working.