Hard work is a good thing! But it is not enough for us to develop as much as we are able to. How many times have we seen somebody clocking hours of work along with overtime in order to rise quickly through the ranks and acquire better opportunities within a company. They typically get promoted quickly and then plateau and stop advancing.
This is a common occurrence, and it’s fueled by the misconception that working as hard as you can, as long as you can, will yield the most results in your life. This is wrong. Hard work is not enough. And sometimes, it could even become detrimental. Some people even become workaholics based on this concept, and it completely wrecks every single aspect of their life – at times this yield results at work, but more often than not, it will just mess your life up.
Part of the issue is that much of what you need to be successful lies outside of you and in your ability to make those around you be empowered to create their own success. If you focus is on your own work you may not be able to see how what you are doing is effecting the net productivity of the company or team you are working with in.
A balance needs to exist. People should give themselves time to rest, time to experience life outside work. Time to grow. When you take your time to do these things, you will start developing more as an individual, you will sleep better, you will think better, and you will allow yourself the time to evaluate your life from a perspective than will procure your growth both inside and outside your job. It is a choice that only you can make, and it will in return lead you to better decision making at work, to more creativity, and to bring a positive energy back with you into your workplace. When exchanging these new assets with your colleagues you will notice how things will start flowing differently, and they will flow in favor of those things you want to accomplish.
So, remember, overworking yourself will definitely not help you be more successful, at least in the long run. Overgrowing yourself will!
Every month we read a book together in the office, and today I’d like to review one that we just went through. It’s called Head Strong, by Dave Asprey. Dave Asprey calls himself a “biohacker”. He’s an individual that is always on the look for new ways to more energy, thinking clear, and being more productive overall; and all of these are accomplished through the implementation of life habits tweaking along with the use of interesting technology applications. He’s done research and experimentation of all of this on himself, and this book is based on those findings. We found several bits of useful information in this read, and I’d like to share a bit of that with you.
One of the more interesting topics he speaks about is that one related to how the energy in our cells actually function, and how their efficiency levels change under certain circumstances. First mitochondria provide cellular energy and are the basis for healthy cellular function. These are the “powerhouses of the cell”, the parts of cells that turn sugars, fats and proteins that we eat, into forms of chemical energy that the body can use to carry on living.
When mitochondrial energy reserves dwindle due to any given cause (being sick, lack of food, etc.), one of the first areas that is affected in our body is our brain; more specifically the frontal area of our brain, the one that takes care of higher thinking and all of that which makes us productive. The back of our brain remains a priority, since it’s in charge of maintaining all of the basic functions that we need in order to not die – It’s also important to consider that the brain uses approximately 10 times more mitochondrial energy in it’s cells than most of our other body parts. In the book, he mentions several tips and hacks designed to help us manage this energy reserves and keep our bodies as efficient as possible, in order to maintain focus and keep our higher thought processes in levels that help us maintain our productivity and creativity.
He also speaks about a concept called “light pollution”. Light pollution refers to how we, in our endless quest to embrace more and more technology into our lives, are bombarded by different spectrums of light which are different from the Sun’s spectrum and overstimulate our visual cortex. This area specifically, burns 10 times energy than other areas of our brain, and when overstimulated, can deplete our energy reserves very quickly.
Some hacks he mentions in order to combat this over stimulation is the use of red lights near screens and other blue light sources in order to balance their output and reduce the impact. This is because blue light is the most troublesome type of light when speaking about visual over stimulation, and fluorescent sources as well as LED bring in lots of it with them. Also, the use of blue light-filtering glasses is recommended, and these can be purchased online. Basically, they work by filtering out the amount of blue light we receive into our eyes on different levels depending on the glasses (these can be easily purchased online if you’re interested).
Wim Hof, also known as “The Iceman”, is also mentioned in his book. He holds several world records regarding to survival and resistance to cold. Some of the techniques used by Hof have been recommended by Asprey. Special breathing techniques and cold therapy can dramatically increase energy, modulate immune systems and hormones in order to help you increase and better manage your energy reserves. These are only a few applications of his work, but more exist – if you’re interested in this field as we are, or are looking for ways to make changes to the quality of your lifestyle, we can’t recommend this book enough.