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Daily habit that increases creativity by 60%

·3-min read
Feel like you're in a creative funk? Try this. (Image: Getty).
Feel like you're in a creative funk? Try this. (Image: Getty).

When’s the last time you just got up and went for a nice, long walk?

If you’re working from home, it could have been a few minutes ago, hours ago, or even days ago.

However, there are real benefits to incorporating a stroll into your daily routine, according to author and head of content development at Thrive Global Marina Khidekel.

Speaking to Yahoo Finance Australia editor-in-chief Sarah O’Carroll, Khidekel said there are hundreds of small changes people can make to their day to build healthier and happier lives.

One of them is simply going for a walk, the author of new book Your Time to Thrive said.

“In order to give ourselves that time to unplug and recharge, you need to pick a transition mark at the end of your workday,” Khidekel.

One way to do this is to do a lap of the block at the end of the day to signify the transition.

“We need to … give ourselves that time. Walking is huge. Walking has been shown to increase creativity by as much as 60 per cent,” she said.

And it doesn’t just need to be at the end of the day. Swapping out a Zoom meeting for a phone meeting during a walk also means you can communicate while getting some movement in and thinking more freely.

What else does Khidekel and Thrive Global suggest to make my life better?

Thrive Global’s mission is to end the stress and burnout epidemic by introducing small, meaningful changes into workers’ daily lives.

As Khidekel said, the emphasis needs to be on ‘small’. If the changes seem too big, they’ll fall into the ‘too hard’ basket.

She herself is a fan of the 60-second rule, describing it as a microstep that can radically change a day.

“Some of the most resonant learnings that you’ll see woven throughout the book are that we can’t prevent stress, but we can … control how we react to it,” she said.

“Neuroscience tells us we can actually course correct from stress in only 60 to 90 seconds.”

To do this, just take 60 seconds to focus on the rising and falling of your breath.

“It activates our parasympathetic nervous system, which helps calm us and lower our stress.”

She likes to weave these 60 second resets into her day, often following a meeting, just to give herself the time to prepare for what’s coming next.

It’s also a great way to start the day, she says.

Many of us check our phones first thing in the morning, even before we’re fully conscious.

The problem with this is that by doing so, we’re starting the day by thinking about other people: their requests, their news and their triumphs.

Instead, Khidekel advocates spending just 60 seconds when we wake up choosing instead to set our personal and professional goals for the day, and reflecting on something that we are grateful for.

The critical thing is to start small.

As Khidekel said, aiming to improve an aspect of our lives 1 per cent a day will lead to a 100 per cent improvement in just over three months.

“The best way to adopt healthier habits is by starting small and creating an environment… in which doing the right thing is as easy as possible.”

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