Complaining about being busy has become a badge of honor in this age of compulsive multitasking. But doing too many things at the same time has been shown to hurt productivity and mental health. In her new book "The Sweet Spot: How to Find Your Groove at Home and Work," UC Berkeley sociologist Christine Carter outlines how adopting micro-habits and strategically saying "no" can decrease stress and increase efficiency.
Interview Highlights: Tips for Living in the 'Sweet Spot'
1. Foster Your Social Side
"What we know from hundreds of years of research in sociology and psychology is that that ease, health, longevity, well-being overall, is best predicted by our social ties and our connections to other people.Our friendships and our positive relationships create incredible ease for us in that they relieve stress. They tell our nervous system that everything is okay, and that we can be creative and innovative. And they create strength for us. We we get most of our power really from learning from other people, from other people's support, their love."
2. Take Breaks
"We know that our brain can function at a higher level when you honor its natural rhythms, when you allow yourself to play, when you allow yourself to exercise, to do things that we don't typically put into the busy-ness categories. ... For every about 50 minutes of work that I do, I take 10 or 15 minutes of a brea. I might just go outside and throw the ball for my dog. It might look idle, but I know that my unconscious mind is chewing on a problem and that this is the best way to reduce the feelings of tension and stress."