I feel lazy in the office (a note to web developers)

Most people in tech or media know the challenges associated with working in the office. The creative, intuitive mind switches off, but fortunately, there are ways to help this if you’re frequently office-bound.

Life was so much easier when humans were still flexing their muscles as keen hunter-gatherers, right? Yeah… we long for the simple life too. Unfortunately, the height of a sudden surge in adrenaline is limited within the four walls of our white-washed offices these days. It sucks, but it’s probably as good as we’re going to get this century.

Ironically, one of the most common struggles for those working from behind a desk (which, let’s face it, is the vast majority of us) is retaining focus and productivity. Whether you’re the creative type working with front-end design, or meddling in the depths of code as a web or software developer, keeping a tight reign on your distraction level is something that you’re bound to struggle with from time to time. And of course, for some of us, it’s worse than others.

Distractions, teamwork, and deadlines can all act as psychological deterrents to getting work done and being productive.

Many developers and creatives, in general, tend to be night owls, and the demands of a complicated development job can feel hard to get into during the early hours of the day.

Most people in tech or media know the challenges associated with working in the office. The creative, intuitive mind switches off, but fortunately, there are ways to help this if you’re frequently office-bound.

How do we manage it? Through a simple, effective solution, which is scientifically backed and works to enhance the creative mind, and not restrict it.

The solution: Tune in, tune out.

According to a study which was cited by the University of Toronto, “other people’s brains might shut out this same information through a process called ‘latent inhibition’ – defined as an animal’s unconscious capacity to ignore stimuli that experience has shown are irrelevant to its needs."

Harnessing your latent inhibition as a creative, it seems, can be helpful in tuning out from the distractions around you.

Jordan Peterson, a psychology professor, says the following:

“Through psychological testing, the researchers showed that creative individuals are much more likely to have low levels of latent inhibition.

“This means that creative individuals remain in contact with the extra information constantly streaming in from the environment.”

So, it would appear that allowing yourself to zone out of surrounding stimuli that can drain your attention will enable you to increase your ability to focus.

Performing simple exercises that allow you to practice isolated focus whilst in a stimulating environment will help you to build on your latent inhibition.

You can practice this at home. Try brushing your teeth whilst watching television, consciously alternating your focus between the strokes of the toothbrush and what’s happening on the television.

Slowly work these types of exercises into your daily life, until you’re able to practice this in the office too. Give it a week, and let us know how you did.

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