About Wellness Corporate Solutions

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Boost Employee Performance with a Little Help from Nature

As the afternoon slump creeps up on you, a short walk to the kitchen or the nearest Starbucks to grab a cup of coffee might sound like the perfect way to get the boost you need and prevent a total crash. In fact though, that cup ‘o joe might just increase stress levels and hamper productivity. Some recent studies show that a few minutes spent looking at nature scenes or going for a quick stroll outside might actually be the best antidote to the drowsiness that sets in towards the end of the workday.

For us city dwellers, it turns out that, like the deceptive cup of coffee, taking a walk around a city block might not be the best way to clear your mind. Although it’s a great way to squeeze in some physical activity during the workday, the attention required to maneuver through a busy urban environment can sap the brain of what little energy remains for the day. In contrast, the research suggests a serene, natural environment can help the mind to focus and rejuvenate.

Office workers can benefit from this information by placing soothing nature scenes around their desks or companies can allocate an out-of-the-way room as a deliberately peaceful escape.

Despite the finding that taking a walk through the city can exhaust the mind, it seems like the fresh air and familiar sights might serve to keep the brain sharp and engaged. Maybe dodging pedestrians on a busy city street isn’t the best choice for a mid-afternoon pick-me-up, but it can’t hurt to get away from work if only for a few minutes to return refreshed and recharged.

2 comments:

Affiliated Physicians said...

"the attention required to maneuver through a busy urban environment can sap the brain of what little energy remains for the day."

What an interesting find! Most urban dwellers probably don't think about how much maneuvering we have to do just to get from point A to point B because we do it everyday. There is no such thing as a casual stroll on a city sidewalk.

Neil | Butterfield said...

Yes time away from the desk during work hours is a great idea. Some people are lucky in that they do not work in very built up areas and they are able to walk in more tranquil surroundings.