Last week, we discussed the complex topic of seeing schedules and tasks from a system perspective. The world is filled with unintended consequences. Keeping those consequences from hindering productivity will always be a challenge.
Today, we’ll keep things a little simpler. If you coach your agents to adopt these two habits, you’ll not only be helping them perform better, but also live healthier lives.
Habit #1: Walking. Dorene Internicola of Reuters recently summarized the latest research on the benefits of walking compared to other forms of exercise.
Walking is a biological imperative like eating. There are movement nutrients, just like dietary nutrients, that the body needs. In essence, walking is a “superfood.” It’s the defining movement of a human, and it’s a lot easier to get movement than it is to get exercise.
…Too many people believe that spending grueling hours at the gym is the only way to fitness. There’s this Biggest Loser idea out there that if you’re not throwing up and crying you’re not getting fit.
Internicola suggests a better alternative is to intermix several short walks during the day with the required “sitting” we do to perform our sedentary jobs.
Researchers say emerging evidence suggests the combination of physical activity and inactivity (ie. the ratio of one activity to the other) may be more important for chronic disease risk than a measure of physical activity alone.
How much walking is necessary? Researchers suggest at least 150 minutes/week. This rate amounts to three 10-minute walks per day spaced out between times of sitting and other inactivity.
But, it’s also a great way to improve your health.
Turning those you coach into coffee drinkers may be one of best coaching recommendations you can offer.
Authority Nutrition, Kris Gunnars’ wildly popular blog, makes a compelling case for the physiological and psychological benefits of drinking coffee. It’s a very long article that has more than 60 research citations. Here is a quick summary of the benefits researchers have documented:
Coffee Can Improve Energy Levels and Make You Smarter
Coffee Can Help You Burn Fat
The Caffeine Can Drastically Improve Physical Performance
There Are Essential Nutrients in Coffee
Coffee May Lower Your Risk of Type II Diabetes
Coffee May Protect You From Alzheimer's Disease and Dementia
Caffeine May Lower The Risk of Parkinson's
Coffee Appears to Have Protective Effects on The Liver
Coffee Can Fight Depression and Make You Happier
Coffee Drinkers Have a Lower Risk of Some Types of Cancer (Liver and colorectal cancer particularly)
Coffee Does Not Cause Heart Disease and May Lower The Risk of Stroke
Coffee May Help You Live Longer
Coffee is The Biggest Source of Antioxidants in The Western Diet
Of course, there are a few noteworthy downsides to coffee as well. For some people, it may have some negative effects such as causing anxiety and disrupting sleep, but this depends greatly on the individual.
Also, don’t even think about putting milk, chemical-laden creamer, or sugar in your coffee if you want the health benefits. The health benefits are from black coffee.
Finally, how much is enough (or how much is too much) coffee? Of course the optimal amount varies by the research study, but the most common beneficial amount seems to be four to five cups per day.
Here’s the optimal agent workday: Schedule four to five networking meetings per day. Drink one cup of black coffee at each networking meeting. Take a 10-minute walk between each of the meetings.
If the agents you coach follow this routine, you’ll probably have the most healthy, productive, and wired team in your market!