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The Best Body Hacks to Boost Your Productivity At Work

The Best Body Hacks to Boost Your Productivity at Work

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Use Your Right Ear for Important Conversations:

Researchers at Italy's university Gabriele d'Annunzio have shown in recent studies that the right and left ears are better suited for different tasks. As LiveScience reports, the right ear is better for processing information.

"It depends on the type of input: speech is heard 'better' with the right ear, if the characteristics to be processed are those connected to the sounds of a given language (i.e phonemes), whereas the left ear might have an advantage in discriminating non-phonemic aspects of speech (i.e. prosody, emotional cues, etc.)," said researcher Luca Tommasi. 

The good news is that the study showed 72 percent of participants preferred to use their right ear to listen. The bad news is that the study doesn't document effects on the left ear, and there's nothing beyond Tommasi's quote to suggest it's better for emotional cues.

It's simply a matter of applying this knowledge in regular work scenarios. When you're in a group meeting where the manager is talking about information, it's more useful to be sitting in a way where your right ear is leaning into the talk.

Chew Gum or Coffee Stirrers for Added Focus:

Chewing gum can boost mental performance, but it can be distracting to those around you, and unhealthy for you. Gretchen Rubin of The Happiness Project recommends switching to coffee stirrers:

I've found that I snack less, and concentrate better, when I chew on a plastic stirrer–the kind that you get to stir your to-go coffee. An occupational hazard with writing is to write while eating, smoking, or drinking–usually things that aren't very healthy–but having the stirrer in my mouth diminishes that urge. Also, chewing on a stirrer helps me to concentrate. I feel more focused when I chewing away. 

Rubin is the first to admit that this may be just a placebo effect, but Wired rounded up several studies about the cognitive benefits of chewing gum, which back up Rubin's idea. Those studies note that the gum's ingredients aren't the cause. The clarity boost comes from chewing, which refreshes us for the task at hand. One thing though: the effect usually lasts for about 20 minutes, so save it for when you really need to concentrate on some task.

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