When it comes to productivity in the workplace, a lack of output isn’t always tied to the factors that immediately come to mind. In many cases, it’s those issues that go undetected that have the biggest impact.
Are These Factors Hurting Your Output?
Humans are very fickle beings. There are any number of interconnected variables that can impact the way we think, feel, and act. This makes us one of the more unique species on the planet, but also creates challenges regarding motivation and output.
If you’re struggling to maximize productivity at work, don’t assume that it has to do with your immediate work environment or other direct factors. It’s entirely possible that your productivity is being hindered by hidden issues that you aren’t always cognizant of.
Let’s check out a few common issues that frequently hinder workplace productivity:
1. A Bad Mattress at Home
You’re aware of the importance of sleep. You know that you need seven or eight hours per night in order to give your mind and body the best chance of being rested and focused. But what you may not be aware of is how various factors impact your quality of sleep. In particular, you need a good mattress.
“The top layer of the mattress must be comfortable as this will help you get to sleep initially and the core layer must be supportive to maintain a good level posture throughout the night,” Sleep Republic explains. “If you sleep with a partner it’s crucial to have a mattress that provides no partner disturbance as many people are light sleepers and any movement by the person next to them will wake them up.”
If you’ve never explored different mattress options, it would be worth your time to do a little research on what type of sleeper you are and which mattresses are best for your individual needs.
2. Lack of Proper Hydration
“Have you ever crashed at work in the afternoon? If so, dehydration was probably a cause,” DripDrop explains. “Fatigue and tiredness are common symptoms of dehydration, and this has been observed in several studies. Even mild or moderate dehydration – which is indicated by the feeling of thirst – causes decreases in alertness and concentration, a direct result of fatigue.”
According to one study, forest workers who were only 1-percent dehydrated experienced a significant 12 percent drop in productivity (compared to their fully hydrated colleagues). Considering that 75 percent of Americans are chronically dehydrated, this is likely something that affects you.
3. Relationship Issues
If you’ve ever been in a volatile relationship where you’re constantly arguing and getting in fights with your significant other, then you know just how emotionally challenging it can be to focus on other areas of your life – including work.
You might think every relationship is like this, but they aren’t. If you find yourself in a hostile relationship that’s sucking up your mental energy and focus, it’s probably time to move on. A healthier relationship – or even an extended period of being single – could help you get back on track.
4. Excessive Digital Connectivity
At any given moment, you have a computer, tablet, smartphone, and TV within reach. You’re more connected than ever – which would seem like a good thing. But is it?
Excessive digital connectivity actually puts a strain on the brain, forcing us to shift back and forth between different tasks and visual stimuli.
“The prefrontal cortex is the area most challenged,’ neuroscientist Dr. Adam Gazzaley says. “And then visual areas, auditory areas, and the hippocampus — these networks are really what’s challenged when we are constantly switching between multiple tasks that our technological world might throw at us.”
When you’re engaged in a single task at a time, the prefrontal cortex works in complete harmony with the other portions of the brain. But as soon as you toss in another task, you force the left and right sides to work independently. This is when productivity wanes and mistakes happen.
The solution may be to take a step back and disconnect for periods of the day. As a result, you’ll be able to pour your focus into one important task at a time.
Find Out What’s Holding You Back
It’s up to you to determine which hidden factors are holding you back from being dialed in at work. By looking into the ones exposed in this article, you may find that your lack of productivity is related to something as simple as a bad mattress or poor relationship.
Whatever the case, be proactive and take charge of the underlying problem. Your professional pursuits will flourish like never before.