This is a Bloomberg post and the link to the original article is here.

Posture matters more than you may think. In fact, there’s evidence that whether you sit up straight or slouch affects the quality of your work. To understand why, it can be helpful to look back at our evolutionary ancestors. Millions of years ago, if you were sitting or lying down, the chances were pretty good you were in a relatively safe spot and could let your guard down. If you were standing or moving around, though, being extra attentive might mean the difference between finding food and becoming prey.

Today, our bodies still have this expectation baked in, says Max Vercruyssen, a retired ergonomist and human-performance specialist who’s conducted pioneering research related to posture. That means, depending on how you hold yourself, there could be huge differences in how your body operates, which could have major implications for office workers looking to boost their productivity.

Sit Up Straight to Fight the Post-Lunch Slump

One key change that occurs when you sit up straight or stand: Your heart rate goes up about 10 beats per minute, providing a possible improvement in reaction time and attention, according to Vercruyssen.

He suggests adjusting your posture or standing up straight when you have a task that requires extra attention and focus. Just don’t expect it to be a cure-all: Any posture-related changes to your performance are likely to be most noticeable when you’re exhausted or coming out of a post-lunch slump. “To think it’s going to have a major effect when you’re already optimally motivated may be a disappointment,” Vercruyssen says.

Got a Tough Task? Try Being Uncomfortable

Ergonomics is all about trade-offs. According to Vercruyssen, the more comfortable we are, the easier it is to crash, lose focus, and possibly even doze off. “Sitting on a hard chair is going to have you more activated than a comfortable chair,” he says.

Vercruyssen suggests balancing this trade-off by sorting and scheduling your tasks by difficulty. If you feel like you can stomach the discomfort of standing or sitting up straight for only short bursts, use this time take on your most taxing projects. If there’s something you could do in your sleep, that’s a good time to get comfy.

Still not sold on giving up your lounge chair? According to Vercruyssen, getting up for even a few minutes—to use the restroom or grab a glass of water, for example—can help boost your brain and zap you out of that midafternoon slump.

And before you toss out your Aeron for a hard block of wood, be aware that there’s a difference between mild discomfort and subjecting yourself to a positively painful posture. “This discomfort is going to become a focus of your attention, so you’re not going to be able to devote the attention to the task that you want to do,” says Bill Yates, a professor of otolaryngology and neuroscience at the University of Pittsburgh.

Slouching Makes You Sad

It may not be surprising to learn that when we’re feeling depressed or defeated, our bodies tend to slump. What is surprising: This effect goes both ways, and simply slouching seems to bring out these negative thoughts and generally make us feel worse for wear.

In a series of studies, Erik Peper, a professor of health education at San Francisco State University, had participants sit in various positions and then asked them to recall either negative thoughts and memories or positive and empowering ones. Slouchers had a harder time recalling the positive thoughts. “If you take on a collapsed position, it really shifts the physiology,” Peper says. “Testosterone goes down, cortisol goes up, you’ll have more access to helpless and hopeless thoughts, and your brain has to do more work to bring up positive ones.”

Peper chalks this effect up to what he calls a “cowering position,” which is commonly adopted by animals who have been defeated or are showing deference in the face of danger. “This position in mammals says, ‘Dont hurt me,’ but we have taken it on for hours a day because of our furniture design,” he says. “As a result, our bodies evoke these qualities, and we don’t even recognize it. We just feel like we’ve lost our drive or initiative after sitting all day.”

The good news: Peper found the opposite effect to be true as well. Subjects who sat up had an easier time recalling positive and optimistic memories, and just 30 seconds of skipping in place was shown to markedly improve mood and energy levels.

Emotions are intense feelings that are directed at someone or something. Moods are feelings that tend to be less intense than emotions and that often (though not always) lack a contextual stimulus. Most experts believe that emotions are more fleeting than moods. For example, if someone is rude to you, you’ll feel angry. That intense feeling of anger probably comes and goes fairly quickly, maybe even in a matter of seconds. When you’re in a bad mood, though, you can feel bad for several hours. Emotions are reactions to a person (seeing a friend at work may make you feel glad) or event (dealing with a rude client may make you feel angry). You show your emotions when you’re “happy about something, angry at someone, afraid of something.” Moods, in contrast, aren’t usually directed at a person or event. But emotions can turn into moods when you lose focus on the event or object that started the feeling. And, by the same token, good or bad moods can make you more emotional in response to an event. So when a colleague criticizes how you spoke to a client, you might become angry at him. That is, you show emotion (anger) toward a specific object (your colleague). But as the specific emotion dissipates, you might just feel generally dispirited. You can’t attribute this feeling to any single event; you’re just not your normal self. You might then overreact to other events. This affect state describes a mood.

  1. Mood is something a person may not express whereas emotions may be expressed.
  2. Mood may last for a long period whereas emotions may last only for the time being.
  3. Emotions are aroused in people by some specific objects or situations. On the other hand, moods are not created in someone because of any specific object or any particular situation.
  4. If a person gets angry, he expresses that emotion towards someone. If a person is in a sad mood, he cannot express it to others.
  5. When compared to moods, emotions are more extreme.
  6. Emotion is a word that has been derived from the French emouvoir.
  7. Mood is a word that is derived from the Old English word of Mod, which represented military courage.




The economic impact of bad meetings |

Browntape Blog

If you’re looking to get into online retail, subscribing to an online marketplace is arguably the quickest way to do so. The market for online retail in India has grown by leaps and bounds in the past few years. In fact, this Nasscom report says that the Indian e-commerce industry will touch the $100 billion figure by 2020. It is no wonder that there are innumerable online marketplaces for a retailer to choose from. There are online megamalls that let you sell virtually anything under the sun, and there are niche marketplaces like this one that lets you sell only socks. Each marketplace has its own pros and cons, and in this post we are going to compare the top 5 largest marketplaces in India.

Every retailer has a basic set of queries before subscribing to a marketplace. In fact, we have written about the things you need to consider…

View original post 284 more words

We always procrastinate our work telling that we will handle the work in future time. Basically, the current self of yours hands over the work to the future self.

Your current self says I will have this pleasure now (delaying the work) and my future self will take the pain (doing the work). The current self gives the reason that – my future self will take the pain because it will offset the pleasure that I am having now. This is what we always do when we postpone that work and enjoy or delay some work.

Later, your future self when it becomes the current self looks at the past self and thinks “how stupid is my past self to do something like this?”. This is a constant battle between the future self and  the current self.

What is going wrong here?

There is a major assumption that is made in this: that your future self will remember how much it’s past self has enjoyed (had pleasure) and will therefore be ready to take the pain (offsetting the pleasure of the past).

This is not a valid assumption. Why?

  1. Your future self is your imagination. You can imagine anything.
  2. Forgetfulness – you are assuming that you won’t forget the experience of emotions of this pleasure when you are in the future.
  3. You won’t remember for your future everything you experienced in the past. Experiencing self and Remembering self are different.
  4. You cannot remember the exact emotions you felt in your past. Emotions cannot be created on your own, it is a very quick (1/30th sec) response to stimuli. You can only remember the memories of the emotions, you cannot recreate the emotional experience itself. However, if you face a very similar stimuli in your future then those emotions could be triggered.
  5. The current self is making some assumptions about the future self. Also, the current self is actually not even aware of some of the other assumptions that are made inherent in the task itself. Only when you do the task will you actually realize the assumption made. If the current self hands it over to the future self, the assumptions in the task might come as a surprise very late in the day for the future self.


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Academic Exam: Can you solve this problem by applying the concepts that were taught in the class?

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