Yes, yes, I know that AntiRSI is freeware. Still, it doesn’t run on Windows and I think the best way to discipline yourself is doing so without any external aids, so here’s my current recipe (which, ironically, I’ve been following for months before the current bout of trouble):
- Take a break every half an hour or so (fetching a glass of water will be good for you in several ways).
- Get up and go talk to people. Even if they’re across the courtyard – they’ll appreciate the courtesy (depending on what you’re going to discuss, of course).
- If you have to call someone, get up and go somewhere else to do it – it’s not just about moving, it’s about creating a specific context for that conversation and removing distractions.
- If E-mail is unavoidable, there are two main tacks:
- Follow five sentences as much as possible (the current state of emergency means I’m at two right now).
- If an e-mail needs to go out, make sure it does the job, i.e., write less often and with better content. On average, you’ll write less, since you’ll often start to summarize five or six messages into one.
- Make a habit of checking your chair adjustment and the position of your forearms and shoulders regularly (essential if people keep swiping your chair, even when it’s plainly not better than theirs).
Seems fairly straightforward, right? So what did I miss to get myself into my latest fix?
- When you leave the office, leave the office.
- And do it on time.
There is a reason why you (generally) only get paid for the hours you work. And however much you’re paid, you don’t get paid in health points – life isn’t a game.
Well, not usually, at least – either way, you only get one go at it.