TED Talk Round-Up: Work Smarter, Not Harder

Between work, school, family and relationships, community obligations, and attempting to maintain a semblance of a normal sleep schedule and exercise routine, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and to feel like you can’t quite manage it all. With everything that’s crammed into my work and personal schedule, I find myself feeling that way on a fairly regular basis, which is why I’m always looking for tips on working more efficiently, simplifying my workload, and improving my focus and balance. If you’re in a similar boat, fear not! This week we’ve rounded up a collection of TED Talks aimed to inspire you and give you tips on improving your focus, improving your efficiency, goal-setting, and showing you  how to work smarter, not harder. Hopefully, with these talks under your belt, you’ll be able to feel a little more balanced and empowered to manage all of your life roles. Let’s get started!

All it takes is 10 mindful minutes by Andy Puddicombe

Learn from mindfulness expert Andy Puddicombe about the transformative power of integrating a short daily mindfulness exercise into your routine. You’ll learn how doing so can help strengthen your focus and change your perspective to give your brain the boost it needs to handle its daily tasks.

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Stress-Busting Activities Under 5 Minutes

Stress can sometimes be a good thing – giving you that final push to make it through the end of your workout or finish a project before the deadline; however, intense or chronic stress can wreak havoc on your physical, emotional, and mental health. The best way to manage stress long-term is to make lifestyle changes like exercising regularly, sleeping enough, and regularly checking in on your physical, mental, and spiritual well being.

All of these are great practices, and can help bolster your resilience against stress; however, if you’re in the middle of a busy workday, halfway through an exam, or struggling to meet a project deadline, checking out to sleep 8 hours, eat a healthy meal, or fit in an hour long sweat sesh is usually anywhere from impractical to impossible. In this way, it’s good to master a couple of quick stress-busting exercises to employ when you need a fast fix for your stress levels. We’ve rounded up several practical stress relievers that take less than 5 minutes – try out several to find the ones that work for you!

Try these tips to manage your stress levels

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The Best Apps for Managing Stress

Stress isn’t always a bad thing. In the short-term, low level stress can help us focus and improve our performance. It can give us the boost we need to finish a big project or make an important decision. However, I think we can all agree when we say that an overabundance of stress is the absolute worst.

First, a quick primer on stress: Stress is a normal psychological and physical reaction to the demands of life.  When your brain perceives a threat (anything from a fast approaching deadline to a fast-approaching wild animal), it signals your body to release a burst of hormones that increase your heart rate and raise your blood pressure. This “fight-or-flight” response fuels you to deal with the stressful situation at hand. Once the threat (or stress-inducing trigger) is gone, your body is meant to return to a normal, relaxed state. However, given the nonstop complications of modern life,  many of us rarely return to that relaxed state, merely hopping from one stressor to another.

It’s easy to get stressed out from day-to-day demands. Luckily, there are healthy ways to manage your stress.

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Productivity Tips, Tricks, and Tools

An oldie but a goodie: this post was originally published on July 14th, 2016.

For us medical librarians, this time of year is when we start gearing up for a new class of medical students to take the College of Medicine by storm. With new classes and orientations around the corner (and general lethargy being less socially acceptable in the fall than in the warm, languid summer months), upping our productivity is the name of the game. Here are some productivity tips, tricks, and tools that we find helpful, and  may help you knock out a new project or build a new habit as well!

blog-image-are-you-leaking-productivity

Unfortunately, growing extra arms isn’t a viable option for improving your workflow.

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Tips for a Healthy Spring

Springtime brings with it a flurry of activity and a sense of renewal. The flowers bloom, the weather warms, and I get an intense drive to clean my home and refresh it for a new season. Although this season abounds with fresh opportunities, it also brings its own health concerns (pollen, anyone?). Follow these tips to help you have a healthy spring and enjoy the best of the season!

blooming-springtime

How will you stay healthy this spring?

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The Most Common Holiday ER Visits – And How to Avoid Them

For many people, the holidays are a joyous and festive time to spend with family and loved ones. However, even with all of the warm holiday wishes and holiday cheer of the season, this time of year can also be an accident waiting to happen. During the holiday season, emergency rooms across the U.S. see an increase in visits due to holiday-related injuries and illnesses. Read on to learn about some of the most common holiday injuries and how you can avoid them.

What dangers are lurking in your holiday plans?

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