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Benefits of Music at Work

With people returning to work after a three-day weekend we thought we would focus on something fun and motivating for today’s blog topic and that is music! Whether you are working from home, or are back in the office, having a motivating music playlist can set the tone for the day. LinkedIn found that 90% of workers performed better when they listened to music. In addition to improving productivity, it also releases your feel-good neurotransmitter, dopamine, which can also help improve your focus. In today’s blog we’ll look at how different types of music affect you and how to implement music into your own work environment.

In their study, LinkedIn also points out that different types of music work best depending on what tasks you need to accomplish. Need to make a bunch of calls and have a high energy day? Then listen to something upbeat. Need to work on spreadsheets and focus? Then listen to something more soothing like ambient or classical music. While this may seem like common sense, the statistics behind it are worth noting. For those doing data entry, ambient music improves accuracy by 92%. Listening to classical music improves accuracy by 12%. Pop music had been shown to reduce mistakes by 14% and pop music also helps 58% of people complete their data entry tasks faster. What type of music you choose can be huge for boosting productivity.

When working in an office, it’s important to realize that there will likely be varied taste in music. Make sure to take each member of your team's preference into consideration and change up the music so it’s inclusive and everyone has a bit of what they enjoy. Spotify, Pandora, and Apple Music all have a variety of playlists you can find by simply searching for “work playlist,” but we recommend getting creative. Maybe members of your team can each put together their own work playlist and you play them in the office, switching it up each day. If your workplace is too varied, and some employees need soft ambient music all day and others need something livelier, it might be a better idea to implement headphones. Try it out and see what works best for your environment. Of course, if you’re still working from home, then by all means play your favorite songs all day long, being mindful of the type of music as mentioned above, and see how it affects your productivity and happiness at work.

Benefits of Music at Work

Having Better Attention Spans

Our attention spans are constantly being tested and in a world where the news and social media is omnipresent, it can be hard to stay focused. So before I lose you and you check your phone for the latest video on TikTok let me get to the point. In this article I’ll talk about ways to increase your attention span and why you would want to.

Try and focus on one task at a time
So many articles are written about multitasking. Is it good? Is it bad? Like studies about wine and coffee, it seems that there is conflicting evidence all the time and studies published one week will contradict studies published the week before. If you are trying to have a better attention span it’s imperative you begin to focus on the task at hand and give it your full attention. Research shows we don't really multitask but rather switch rapidly between tasks and this can sometimes hurt us from reaching our goals. So the next assignment you’re tasked with give yourself a little test and try and complete it without any distractions and see how it compares to previous times when you’ve jumped between projects. I have a feeling by focusing solely on the task at hand you’ll complete it much faster and it will be better quality.

Take notes by hand
During your next meeting, take notes by hand that you’ll want to remember later on. Studies done show that people who take notes by hand are more engaged listeners and have an easier time remembering important concepts. Taking notes on a laptop, tablet or phone also makes it more tempting to check emails or social media, so during your next meeting stick with the old school method of pen and paper.

Pick up a book
Spoken from an author herself, Ann Patchett, “If your attention span has shrunken like a sweater accidentally thrown in the dryer, and you want to stretch it out again, then reading a book can be the antidote to fragmentation and distraction.” Reading can help you retrain yourself to pay attention for longer periods of time (and of course can be a wonderful source of entertainment). 

Exercise
Exercising is good for so many things and apart from the physical benefits you are aware of, it helps your cognitive control. Studies show that even a 20-minute brisk walk can make a huge difference in your attention span. If you’re able to go for a hike in nature you’ll get even more benefit. From the book, The Distracted Mind: Ancient Brains in a High-Tech World,

“A 2008 paper described a significant improvement in their working memory performance after the nature walk, but not after the urban walk. Similar beneficial effects of nature exposure have been shown to occur in children with ADHD and young adults with depression, and amazingly even in response to just viewing nature pictures.” So if you don’t have the ability to go for a walk in nature, even looking at nature photos online or in a coffee table book can help.

Still with me? Good! See you’re already flexing your attention span muscle. So my parting words are this, in a world that can feel a little chaotic, now more than ever is a great time to slow down and begin to practice increasing your attention span. I hope these tips are a great jumping off point for you to begin.

Having Better Attention Spans

What Drives You?

What drives you? Think about it. Have you asked yourself that question recently? In our current environment, when things feel so uncertain and scary, it can be hard to take a step back and think about what you are striving for. Many of us are just trying to hold our own and hang on, but in doing so are left uninspired and without a sense of purpose in our work. So the question becomes, how can you find that drive again and find meaning in your work? In today’s blog we’ll give you some tips to become motivated and get your work groove back!

Create Small Goals
You may think that setting a large goal, something to really strive for can be helpful, but if you are already not motivated the task will feel too daunting and you will push it off. Instead set small goals, ones you can reach throughout the day, and celebrate these small wins. These small goals can be part of helping you reach your overall bigger goal but instead you break them down into easily attainable steps.

Start the Day on a Positive Note
Begin your day, even if you are currently working remotely, doing something inspiring and uplifting. This could be blasting music you love and dancing, a workout to get your endorphins going, or something more grounded like reading a chapter out of an inspiring book or listening to a podcast. Find what appeals to your mood and start the day off on a positive note that you can carry throughout your day.

Find your “Why”
Instead of simply focusing on the tasks and projects at hand, dig deeper on what motivates you to work hard. Perhaps it’s to set a good example to your kids or supporting the mission of your company. Thinking about your reasoning “why” can help you find a sense of purpose in your work again.

Just Do It
Our last bit of advice is to stop overthinking and simply do it. If you overanalyze, or wait around for motivation to strike, it might not happen. Simply dive into the project and don’t overthink it. Setting those small goals can help a lot here too.

A lot of us are feeling emotionally exhausted by the state of the world at the moment and as a result have found ourselves in a work rut. It’s completely normal you may have found yourself in a slump but by taking some simple steps you can find your motivation and get back in the swing of things!

What Drives You?