1) Create a workplace soundtrack
“We often take the noise level in our office for granted, but studies show that sound influences our performance and mood in surprisingly powerful ways. Free websites like coffitivity.com re-create the low hum of a café, which research suggests boosts creativity.”
2) Schedule walking meetings
“Walking meetings often spark new ideas by taking you out of the office and exposing you to a different environment. Go out to a park or walk to Starbucks. When you’re in a different environment, you can be a lot more creative. because all of a sudden different inputs are surrounding the ideas you’re discussing.”
3) Protect your best hours
“Knowing when you’re at your most productive is the first step to building a better schedule.
“To find out which hours those are, for a few days chart your energy level on the hour, every hour. Just as you might write down the number of reps you completed at the gym, take a second to evaluate how you feel on a scale of one to seven, with ‘one’ representing low energy and ‘seven’ representing high energy.
“After a day or two, you’ll find a pattern. Figure out the two to three hours when you’re at your best, and block them off on your calendar so you can use that time to do important work. For me, there’s no question: I’m at my best between 9 a.m. and noon.”
4) Step outside as often as possible
“Studies show that we can replenish our mental resources by going outdoors. When we’re in a natural setting, it’s easier to let our mind wander and recharge mentally.”
5) Rank autonomy over wealth
“When deciding between jobs, you’re better off prioritizing the amount of freedom a role provides over the size of the paycheck. Studies show autonomy is a better predictor of psychological health than income.”