Dear friends,

As we celebrate Labor Day (safely!), what an opportune time to remember that the way we work has a direct impact on our brain’s health and performance – whether we are WFH or onsite doing an essential job (we can thank the labor movement for making time off a top priority for health in 1894, and it still matters today). Consider this:

  1. Longer hours make it more important than ever to take brief breaks during the day. Just a few minutes away from technology, directing our attention to nature and clearing our mind will do wonders for our ability to focus and think deeply. These brain breaks help us reset and recharge – be intentional about taking five 5-minute breaks each day.
  2. WFH can blur the lines separating work time from personal time. Practice single tasking instead of trying to multitask all day long – our brain thinks more deeply and effectively this way.
  3. Unsurprisingly, stress and anxiety are on the rise. To counter feeling overwhelmed and fearful, we can turn our thoughts outward. Practice acts of compassion each day. Flip the script from fear to curiosity.

Most important of all, let’s all make time to express gratitude – it’s brain healthy for the giver as well as the recipient! This Labor Day weekend, I am grateful for everyone who is stepping up in so many ways to keep our economy and our society going. I am grateful for my incredible, hard-working colleagues at the Center for BrainHealth and The University of Texas at Dallas. And I am grateful that every day we get to contribute to the advancement of science as well as help people everywhere get proactive about their brain’s fitness and performance.

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Published September 3, 2020

See more messages from our Chief Director, Sandra Chapman, PhD here.