Sitting all the time is killing us (and it saps your energy, too). So we'd do well to bring more activity into our days, like with walking meetings. Whether it's a phone call or a face-to-face, the walking meeting can turn a chore into a delight—especially if you head to the park.
"Think about how your space could be more pleasant," Rubin intones. "Could you invest in some desk accessories to help stay organized? Could you replace that hideous lamp?"
While making your optimal workspace is an individual thing, there are some patterns of the most productivity-enhancing desks.
To paraphrase Emerson, it's one of the great compensations in life that you cannot sincerely try to help another without helping yourself—and the American philosopher's wisdom rings true in our striving land of careers. One way to instantiate that is by taking a coffee with someone aspiring to do work like you do—you get boosted by their starry-eyed aspirations, they get grounded by your hard-won experience. In so doing, you can make someone's career happen.
If you don't have enough peace in your life, get up an hour or two earlier and sculpt it into your day.
Our bodies and brains have a natural cycle of energized and not-so-energized, a rhythm that resets about every 90 minutes. Which suggests that we should have matching breaks throughout the day.
Your brain is a hungry hippo, only constituting 2% of your body's weight, but it uses up 25% of its total glucose production. So if you don't keep it well fed, you could quickly get famished, grumpy, and otherwise unproductive.
"This may be the hardest," Rubin cautions, "control the cubicle in your pocket, so you don’t feel distracted and hunted."
That pocket cubicle may go by the name of Android or iPhone, but by any name it's just as distracting. When our phones are constantly buzzing, they don't let us monotask on the complex problems we have to deal with—undoing any creativity before it gets done. So put that thing into airplane mode—then you can really fly.
Hat tip: LinkedIn
[Image: Flickr user Jenny Downing]