That’s a massive gap, and the biggest the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has recorded since 1990.
As a nation we’ve never been afraid of a bit of hard graft – so why aren’t we pulling our weight now?
Everyone has those days, sometimes – when time seems to go extra slowly and yet nothing gets done. All you want to do is close your eyes and be back in bed, but you’re at the office, you’re being paid and you have to work.
Don’t despair – if work is dragging today, we have some top tips for you to boost your productivity:
1. Take a break
Although it doesn’t sound particularly productive, taking regular short breaks throughout the day will help to bring your stress levels down and also keep you focussed.
It’s common sense – when we spend hours and hours doing the same thing, our ability to do that thing diminishes. When we go away and come back to it later, it suddenly seems a lot easier. Take a step back from something, and it immediately becomes clearer.
Every hour, get up from your desk and take a five minute walk. If possible, go outside and take a brisk walk around your office building. The fresh air will wake you up and get the blood pumping to your brain. Your boss may think you’re avoiding work, but when you return to your desk your productivity levels should be significantly higher.
2. Sit up straight
Good posture will make a world of difference to how you feel. Take note of the following:
- What are your feet doing? Don’t cross your legs all day as you’ll cut off the blood supply and increase the risk of developing varicose veins. Instead, keep your feet flat on the floor.
- What are your legs doing? Your thighs should be parallel to the floor and your knees should be resting at the same height as your hips so they’re not sloping downwards.
- Relax your shoulders – Don’t stoop over but try not to tense your shoulders either. To help with this, you should make sure your arm rests are at a good height. Your upper arms should be free to hang down naturally, while your forearms should rest at a 90 degree angle from your body.
- Where is your computer? If you stretch your arms out in front of you now, your finger tips should just brush the screen.
- Activate your abs – Keeping your abdominal muscles activated takes practice. To do this, pull your belly button towards your back without moving your spine.
By sitting up straight, you will combat any potential injuries caused by bad posture and also increase the oxygen flow around your body, helping to boost concentration.
Don’t sit still all day – research shows you can even burn up to 300 calories a day just by fidgeting. Tap your feet or nod your head along to music to keep active throughout the day. When you sit still for long periods of time, your body will begin to shut down and you’ll feel yourself becoming sleepy.
If work problems are getting you down, you might benefit from seeing a life coach. A life coach will help you find ways to either improve your situation at work, or find a new calling in life. To find out more, please visit our work/life balance page.
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