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Tip of the Day: install a work timer

Need to take a break from work? Try a timer on your computer or phone that reminds you to smell the roses.

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Need to take a break from work? Try a timer on your computer or phone that reminds you to smell the roses.

Productivity is a pet love affair of mine, and it should be yours, too, when you realise that you should be taking more regular breaks from staring at your work computer screen. Just a few minutes spent staring out of the window or making a cup of coffee now or then can help you to stay effective. One smart way to make sure that you take breaks is to install a work timer, either on your computer, or a smartphone app.

You can use these clever timers to schedule a five-minute pit stop every hour, or another productivity idea is to schedule 20-minute burst timers, where you knuckle down and power your way through a single task uninterrupted, while ignoring distractions like the phone or email. There are many options available for all smartphones and operating systems. Just search "work timer", and you'll be well on your way.