How to Stay Productive at Work, According to Psychologists


  • When offices went online in pandemics, email and instant messaging became essential.
  • Communication platforms can leave you feeling distracted and stressed.
  • Psychologists recommend unitasking to avoid the stress associated with technology during the work day.
  • Visit the Insider homepage for more stories.

The red dot on your tab, a loud ping from an email, or an amazing tone of fear – constant noises and notifications throughout the work day can leave you feeling scattered, stressed out and away from doing the work.

“Our confidence in the technology is obviously huge and it’s moving pretty quickly, but the pandemic has probably accelerated this a lot,” Saul Rosenthal, told Insider a Boston-based psychologist.

Rosenthal said the men have evolved to draw attention to the outage, and that we are immediately on alert after an email or instant message. A notification can be threatening, too, if the task associated with the message is not manageable.

But psychologists say there are steps you can take to manage technological stress and digital chats during the workday.

Avoid multitasking at work

Whether it’s sending messages on your phone or sending an email during a meeting, multitasking decreases your productivity.

“Multitasking reduces focus and efficiency and concentration and enthusiasm for everything that happens,” he told Insider Jasmin Tahmaseb-McConatha, a professor of psychology at West Chester University in Pennsylvania.

Rosenthal said multitasking also increases your energy. “It takes a lot more resources to move forward and back, and he’s tired.”

He says, pouring all your energy into one project is more effective than jumping from one job to another.


Block time and communicate with your team

Tahmaseb-McConatha said it is important to set expectations for when you will be available for your team. Otherwise, blurred lines will make you feel compelled to respond all day long when your time may be better spent on a project that requires attention.

In fact, Tahmaseb-McConatha tells her students that she is only available to respond to e-mails during a set time. “People need to be very disciplined to define these limits for themselves,” he said.

Organizations should allow workers to have uninterrupted and focused work periods, Rosenthal said. “You’ll have workers who are older productive and more connected to the organization itself. ”

Take a break, even if it’s only five minutes

If you take five-minute breaks a couple of times a day, it will help you with your well-being, Tahmaseb-McConatha said. Disconnection can ultimately also make you more productive.

“If you’re at your computer for four hours, or if you’re at your computer for two hours, you can get the same amount of work done because at some point your brain starts spinning in a circle,” Tahmaseb said. McConatha.

Rosenthal also recommends moving during a five-minute break.

“Our bodies are really evolving to move. And so when you’re stuck in a position that stresses the body,” Rosenthal said.

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