Summer is not over yet, but the start of the new school year is fast approaching, synonymous with stress and anxiety for some. Who says new year, says good resolutions to optimize its capacities and its performances, and that passes by simple gestures (but effective) to include in its daily routine. Posture, management of concentration, physical activity: here are three tips for approaching the start of the school year under the sign of zenitude.
It’s a new start ! Back to school, like the month of January, is like a new blank page that we want to fill with words (and not evils), each one more positive than the other. Highly anticipated, or on the contrary feared, this unmissable event must be synonymous with renewal, with (for those who can) the desire to change a few habits to make work and serenity rhyme. This year, the generalization of telework or hybrid work could contribute to this, as could the four-day week. But it is also possible to adopt new reflexes to work without stress – or almost.
The importance of posture
Hiking, swimming, and other summer activities kept you in top shape during the holidays, and kept you moving tirelessly. Suffice to say that sitting on a chair for seven hours will undoubtedly seem strange to you, and quite uncomfortable, as soon as you return to work. Hence the importance of adopting a good sitting posture, as less uncomfortable as possible, as the National Institute for Research and Safety (INRS) reminds us. “While there is no ideal posture, there is a less uncomfortable sitting posture for screen work“, can we read on its site.
In particular, this involves positioning the screen at a distance of between 50 and 70 cm, depending on its size and resolution, from the eyes, but also – and above all – making sure, thanks to a suitable seat, to maintain the back straight, to position the feet flat on a support (floor or footrest), or to align the hands with the forearms. It is also advisable not to place the keyboard at the edge of the desk (a distance of 10 to 15 cm is required) and to place the top of the computer screen directly in front of the eyes.
How to get to the heart of the matter? Depending on the tasks to be performed and the schedule, staying focused for a long time can seem difficult. According to the entrepreneur @mpickle, which “helps businesses make better decisions,” focus is gained by breaking down big tasks into smaller ones. It is about setting achievable goals to move gradually towards the final goal. Spreading out, or being faced with an incalculable number of tasks at the same time, is most often synonymous with stress. Which does not allow it to accomplish its task in optimal conditions.
When it comes to performing a task that requires concentration over a (very) long period of time, it is best to limit distractions as much as possible, such as social network notifications, the incessant reading of e-mails, or the repeated interruptions from those around him. It can also be beneficial to isolate yourself from certain noise nuisances, considered one of the great enemies of productivity.
A break is needed
Of course, to be focused, you have to be in good shape! Consider taking 15-minute breaks every two hours and looking up from your screen regularly (about every 20 minutes). Physical activity, such as walking, stimulates the brain and helps with concentration. Staying hydrated also helps maintain constant attention. More generally, regular physical activity helps maintain good health (physical and mental). The National Health Nutrition Program in France has recommended since 2002 to practice the equivalent of at least 30 minutes of brisk walking per day.