Reach For the Sky, Pilgrims

by Annie

in energy & well-being

Woman Reaching Hands Over Head to Stretch
One of the most critical factors that determines your overall creativity is one we haven’t really talked that much about on this site before.

Well, by golly, let’s change that now.

The factor I’m talking about is energy and your physical sense of well-being.

And pumpkins, there’s not much in this world that will impact your productivity more than your physical energy and innate sense of comfort in your own skin.

So it stands to reason this is something we really oughtta be talking about, doesn’t it?

Let’s rectify that situation pronto-like, shall we?

So here’s what I know . . .

The simple act of breathing correctly will give you more energy.

Right now.

Right this second, thankyouverymuch.

Try it right now.

Stand up.

Go on, I see you over there on the couch, sitting on your ass like I’m not gonna notice! GET. THE. EFF. UP. (Of course, this applies only if your legs will bear your weight — and if they won’t, then sit up straighter.)


Reach for the sky, pilgrim.

Just like the pretty blonde in the picture up there.

Bring your arms over your head. You can interlace your fingers the way she’s doing, or not (interlacing and turning palms out does seem to give me a better stretch but your mileage may vary).

At the same time, breathe in deeply into your solar plexus, feeling your lungs expand and push your ribs out evenly.

Then exhale, and bring your arms down.

Do that again.

And again. Three times total.

Now, check in with your body. I’m willing to bet you feel just a bit more energetic, a bit more clear-headed, a bit more focused.

One of the biggest problems with productivity for solo workers is physical exhaustion. Believe it or not, it’s very easy for us to get seduced by the innate sedentary nature of computer work, especially, and think “well, I don’t need a break. I mean, I’m not doing anything!”

Au contraire, mes amis.

As a friend of mine noted on Facebook the other day, “If I treated a full-time employee the way I treat myself, I’d be in serious legal trouble. One break every nine hours?!”

You DO need a break. A regular one. Optimally, one every hour.

Go ahead and drink the coffee, but also do this stretch-and-breathe move three times.

Tell me how you feel afterwards in the comments!

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Stephanie Chambers August 23, 2012 at 6:46 pm

Now that you got me up and breathing–hey, it really worked! How you gonna take a little off my bottom half that’s been sitting in PJs all day to write? SC


Annie August 23, 2012 at 9:26 pm

That, sadly (as I’m finding out myself) takes a good bit more than a few stretches. I’ll let you know if I find a shortcut though. I’m all about the shortcuts.


Someone August 23, 2012 at 8:47 pm

How do I feel? I feel like I’ve wasted 30 seconds. Is that bad?


Annie August 23, 2012 at 9:25 pm

Dude. Really? Breathing makes you feel like you wasted time? You may need more help than I can give. :/


Someone August 23, 2012 at 10:30 pm

I think it’s just me being cynical about using time for anything other than work. Which is exactly what you said was BAD in this post. I guess I really need to take this advice.


Annie August 23, 2012 at 10:50 pm

Hrm. Breathing may not be the problem here, sweet Someone … 😉 Let me know if you want to chat further about this. I do have some thoughts that might help.


Linda Ursin August 24, 2012 at 1:06 pm

A super encouraging post, but I’ve can’t today, because my arm’s in a sling. Otherwise I’d definitely do it. 🙂
Linda Ursin recently posted..Going in for Shoulder Surgery


Linda Ursin August 26, 2012 at 4:19 pm

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