Stand up for yourself

We spend too much time sitting down, says Chris Baréz-Brown. Put a plan in motion to break the pattern of autopilot


Stand up for yourself

Humans are not designed to spend their lives sitting down – we are made to move. A hundred years ago, only 10 per cent of us had jobs that meant we were welded to a chair, but now only 10 per cent of us aren’t sitting down all day, every day – and we are developing diseases related to a sedentary lifestyle. To live well, we must move well.

Autopilot kicks in when we live an habituated life. When we sit down, our subconscious takes over, because it doesn’t take a great deal of thought or effort to keep our bottoms on a chair. So, for most of us, the act of sitting down is a trigger for autopilot to kick in. If you want to break the habit and wake up, spend more time standing.

When we are standing, we get 15 per cent more blood circulating through our brains – more blood means more oxygen and, therefore, more energy.

Try to have meetings at work standing up. They will be more productive and take less time. Also, try to raise your desk or computer screen so your workstation is ergonomically correct.

You don’t have to stand all day, but if you get up regularly, you will find it easier to stay focused and energised, and escape the numbness of autopilot.

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