For many of us in design, sales, management and a whole host of other jobs, it can seem like we cannot get away from our computers, ever!! It may sound counterintuitive but I am more productive and creative the more I am away from my computer. Here are some simple techniques that can help you be more productive, creative and also de-stress at the same time.
1. When in the office, get up, walk away from your computer and go talk to your colleagues. Stop the unnecessary instant messaging, stop the unnecessary emails. Instant messaging should be used for quick communications like, “I will meet you in 5 minutes”. Email should be used for conveying detailed information or instructions, when a record of the conversation may be needed for future reference. Getting up and walking over to your colleagues will give you valuable (if minimal) exercise, forge stronger relationships, lead to a better understanding of a problem and a quicker resolution to that problem.
2. When you are drawing a blank, get up and go for a walk. Go get a coffee, go for a walk around the block, just get up and move. Creative problem-solving doesn’t just magically come to you by staring at a computer and knowing how to use that computer. Computers are just a tool to help us get the job done. You need to move around, interact with the world a bit, talk to people, look around and you will find the inspiration needed to unlock your creativity….again, much-needed exercise.
3. Just get up every hour for 5-10 minutes – have a stretch. It is so easy with any computer job to just get stuck at your desk for 1 hour, 2 hours or more. Then what happens? Sore neck, back, headaches and a lot of discomforts that can throw you off your game, affect your creativity, and carry into your personal life after work. Get up and stretch every hour, don’t feel silly about it, just do it already, be a leader in your office on this. A quick 20-second stretch will make you feel like a champ, bolster your productivity, and unlock your creativity. Plus the exercise, it is always good to get the blood pumping.
This is what I do. If you do something different please share your technique on our Linkedin page. We all need to move more so we can, in the end, be more productive and creative.
Gary Moran – Zen Master (sort of)