Why Looking After Your Health Improves Your Productivity

“If you don’t take care of your body, where will you live?” – Gary Keller, The One Thing


In this blog I will explain you how your health seriously impacts upon your time management and productivity. I also share essential tips that personally helped me boost my focus, improve my concentration and increase the quality of output.

One of the things I have learnt from personal experience over the years, is there is an undeniable link between your health and your productivity. When I was younger, I suffered from an eating disorder. I was constantly yoyo-ing between surviving on as little as 800 calories a day, then comfort eating and bingeing on sugary foods. Of course, this had a huge negative impact on my health and also my focus and my productivity. With such little energy, I confused my body with huge spikes of sugar followed by nothing for days. It is no wonder I struggled with focus concentration. My output was inconsistent and shaky most of the time.

Alice Dartnell Life Success Coach Consultation London Gary Keller book “The One Thing”, Poor Health Habits ‘Four Thieves’ productivity

As Gary Keller explains in his book “The One Thing”, poor health habits are one of the ‘Four Thieves’ that can rob you of your productivity.

What is the Link Between Health and Productivity

Have you ever noticed a drop in your energy, focus or output in any of these scenarios?

  • Eating a big meal at lunchtime and then struggling to focus in the afternoon?
  • Struggling on a Monday because you’ve overindulged at the weekend?
  • Had to crash and burn after consuming too much caffeine or sugary snacks?
  • Felt the onset of a headache coming because you haven’t drunk enough water?
  • Noticed you’re more irritable or have less patience when you’re tired?

When we look after our health, we automatically start to improve everything else. We get out what we put in, so what are you putting “in”? How is your sleep, eating habits, nutrition, fitness and mental well-being?

As Gary Keller explains in his book “The One Thing”, poor health habits are one of the ‘Four Thieves’ that can hold you up and rob you of your productivity. As Keller says, personal energy mismanagement is a silent thief of productivity.

Being busy is not an excuse. In fact if you’re busy it is even more important to look after your health and well-being. I have noticed talking to clients and networking, that busy people, especially business owners and entrepreneurs, think they can save time by skimping on sleep, skipping meals, not taking breaks and not doing any exercise.  

I am sure like me, you have, so you have already seen first-hand the undeniable inextricable link between your health and your productivity. Neglecting your health will reduce your productivity.


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Sleep is an essential and sacrificing sleep means sacrificing productivity and your mental & physical health

The Importance of Sleep

So what’s wrong with shaving the odd hour off of your nightly sleep? When there seems too much to do we often work late and sacrifice sleep. However, as Adam Uzialko writes in his article How Sleep Is Essential to Work and Productivity in the Business News Daily, sacrificing sleep also means sacrificing productivity and, in the long run, your mental and physical health. 

In his ground-breaking book, The One Thing”, Gary Keller writes:

Protect your sleep by determining when you must go to bed each night and don’t allow yourself to be lured away from it.

I used to be someone whose motto was “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” but after suffering burnout last year, I’m now 100% committed to putting my health first. I now appreciate how a lack of sleep can also have serious consequences and lead to a burnout. In my article Burnout – What it is, what the warning signs are and how to prevent it , Dr Eleanor Akaho, shares her personal experiences of burnout, explains signs and symptoms of it and gives her tips how to recover from it.


Top Tips for Improving Your Health and Productivity

Top Tips for Improving Your Health and Productivity

Need to improve your health and productivity? These are some of the best tips and techniques that have worked for me!

Tip 1: Get enough sleep every night

As we discussed above, sleep is an essential part of wellness and a lack of sleep will reduce the quality of your work and your productivity.

As the Sleep Foundation explains in their recent blog on sleep hygiene, paying attention to sleep hygiene is one of the easiest ways that you can set yourself up for better sleep.

Strong sleep hygiene means having both a bedroom environment and daily routines that promote consistent, uninterrupted sleep. Keeping a stable sleep schedule, making your bedroom comfortable and free of disruptions, following a relaxing pre-bed routine, and building healthy habits during the day can all contribute to improving the quality of your sleep and increasing your productivity.

Tip 2: Practice the Pomodoro Technique

The Pomodoro Technique is a time management method developed by the entrepreneur and author Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980s.

When you use the Pomodoro Technique, you will always work in short sprints, which will make sure that you’re consistently productive. I always advocate in my coaching and training on goal setting and time management that it is best to work in short, sharp bursts. Taking regular breaks will also keep you creative, focused and also free from burning out.

As Dr. Michael Mosley explained in his recent newspaper article, sitting continually is extremely bad for your health and your immune system. Dr. Mosley recommends standing up and walking around every 30-minutes. 

Read my blog Why Pomodoro Technique Increases Your Productivity, to find out how it will transform your time management and help you be more productive especially if you are working from home.

Tip 3: Keep Moving & Get out your chair!

When you take your Pomodoro breaks don’t forget to get out of your chair and go for short walks, especially if you do a lot of sitting or computer work.

As the Weight Loss and Healthy Lifestyle Coach Anne Larchy explains in my latest book, How To Work From Home : Whilst Staying Productive, Healthy and Sane:

“Working from home we’re much more seated, and often seated on regular chairs and not proper desk chairs, our hip flexors, lower back and shoulders really need attention. Make sure you don’t skip the stretches, otherwise the aches and pains will kick in sooner rather than from old age.”  

Tip 4 : Reduce your sugar intake

You may be surprised to learn that your health and productivity can be improved by reducing your sugar intake. We all realise that when we eat well, we feel better. However, did you know that we also think and perform better?

According to a recent UCLA study, sugar “forms free radicals in the brain’s membrane, compromising our nerve cells’ ability to communicate”. This causes a “foggy” or “out of it” feeling. The study drew strong connections between sugar intake and a reduction in how well we remember instructions and process ideas.

Eat more high protein and high fibre foods like almonds and lentils to help you focus and help curb your sugar cravings.

Tip 5 : Drink More Water

As the Habit Growth article The Unexpected Benefits Of Hydration On Productivity explains, there are countless physical and mental health benefits of staying hydrated. The human body is made up of approximately 70% water, with certain organs containing much higher ratios than this so a hydrated body is a healthy body. Dehydration can lead to lack of energy, difficulty in concentrating, and sub-optimal brain function. Dehydration also can lead to negative mood and interfere with a person’s ability to think rationally. A 2013 study by the University of East London showed that drinking water resulted in a 14% increase in productivity.

Most experts agree that drinking at least 2 litres of water a day will prevent dehydration although I always drink more. Of course, other beverages (except alcohol) help you to hydrate too, but they often contain loads of sugar and those sugar dips do NOT do you any good! Although research has proven that low to moderate caffeine intake does not have a negative impact on hydration, you should not drink more than 4 cups of coffee a day.


Further Reading

Have you heard of the Pomodoro Technique of time management? Read my blog Why Pomodoro Technique Increases Your Productivity, to find out how it will transform your time management and help you be more productive especially if you are working from home.

Are you suffering from burnout? Are you exhausted and irritable? Are you showing the early signs of burnout? Burnout – What it is what the warning signs are and how to prevent it , Dr Eleanor Akaho, shares her personal experiences of burnout, explains signs and symptoms of it and gives her tips how to recover from it.

Have you ever wondered what does it take to look after your health and remain productive when working from home? My latest book, How To Work From Home : Whilst Staying Productive, Healthy and Sane, is a hands-on guide for everyone working at home. It will show you in easy to read tips how to work from home, whilst staying productive, healthy and sane. In informative, easy to read chapters, you will learn how to set up your own dedicated workspace, select the right office equipment and tips for video calling and conferencing. 

As one reader wrote:
Alice has written an amazing, practical, thought provoking read. It is like she is talking and coaching you through each tip and piece of advice that she has masterfully constructed into a brilliant e-book. I have read many personal development books on this topic, but many authors write lengthy chapters. Alice, however, has put these tips together in a short, snappy and easy to dip in and out of style such that you feel you are improving yourself and moving forward with each one. I fully encourage fellow entrepreneurs and those adjusting to a new normal of working from home to purchase and apply these tips to turbo charge their business.

Alice Dartnell Life Success Coach Consultation London How To Work From Home green blue  book kindle cover

On sale at Amazon for just £2.42 / $2.99!  To purchase please click on the link below!

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Book Your complimentary Time Management Productivity Check Up

Always busy?

Constantly running around here and there?

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End up always being the one that takes on too much?

If you have said yes to ANY of the above, then call me and I can help!  

Book your FREE 15-minute Time Management Productivity check up

Click on the link below to make your free 15-minute one-to-one with me! 

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Let’s Work Together

If you are serious about wanting to make life-long changes and positively transform your life, then I would love to hear from you to see how I can support you.

I have helped a range of people on a huge variety of goals – from suffering with confidence loss, to publishing a book, to enabling a change of direction in life, to small business owners struggling with staff – but my main focus is to support the busy professional who is trying to juggle it all.

I can help YOU through  my 1-2-1 coaching, group coaching and my bespoke but life changing courses.  Let’s Work Together.  Sounds good? Take a look at my website to find out more!

Lets work together!

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Other Blog Articles on My Web Site

Below are links to other blog articles that you might be interested to read.

Alice Dartnell Life Success Coach London Consultation holding up I Can post it note inspirational quote How to Expand Your Comfort Zone to Achieve Your Goals

Are you stuck in comfort zone? This article explains what a comfort zone is and why it is important to step out of your comfort zone in order develop new skills, experience new things and fulfil your true potential.


Alice Dartnell Life Success Coach London England UK holding her head and screaming Scream - Argh!5 Reasons Why Failure is Actually a Good Thing

Are you afraid of failure? Remarkably, failure is actually beneficial and an essential part of self-development. Albert Einstein once said, “Failure is success in progress”.  In this blog I am going to explore why failure is actually beneficial and an essential part of self-development.  


3 tips on how to stop self-sabotaging

Are you a secret self-sabotger? Me too! Here are my tips for how to stop self-sabotaging today



Alice Dartnell Life Success Coach London UK visits Okinawa Japan working on her laptop in Japan #Aliceinbusinessland Your guide to getting the work-life balance you deserve

If you asked me what was one of the things I was most proud about in my corporate career, apart from moving up the ladder fairly quickly, it would also probably be my work-life balance.



Alice Dartnell Life Success Coach London UK working on her lap top developing her blog at Naha Airport, Okinawa, JapanWhy ‘SMART’ goals  are stupid (How to improve Goal Setting)

When it comes to goal setting, you’ll have heard about SMART goals.  But if SMART goals are the way to do it, then why do so many of us not achieve our goals?  Here is why SMART goals are stupid and some top tips how you can improve your goal setting!




The real secret to success (and it isn’t what you think it is)

The way to achieve success and get your goal isn’t to do with what you might think. It has nothing to do with willpower, determination or how many degrees you’ve got. It is about the daily discipline of habits. 



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This article is written by Alice Dartnell, life and success coach of Alice Dartnell Limited. Alice empowers busy professionals to be successful, transform their lives and achieve more by improving their confidence, mindset and time management.

For more information please see www.alicedartnell.com.

Copyright 2020 Alice Dartnell Limited



This blog is published solely for educational and entertainment purposes. The author and publisher are not offering it as legal, accounting, health care or other professional services advice. While best efforts have been used in preparing this blog, the author and publisher make no representations or warranties of any kind and assume no liabilities of any kind with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the contents. Neither the author nor the publisher shall be held liable or responsible to any person or entity with respect to any loss or incidental or consequential damages caused, or alleged to have been caused, directly or indirectly, by the information contained herein. Every person and company are different, and the advice and strategies contained herein may not be suitable for your situation. Alice Dartnell or Alice Dartnell Limited is not liable for the contents of any external internet sites listed, nor does it endorse any commercial product or service mentioned or advised in this blog. You should seek the services of a competent professional as appropriate. You are responsible for your own choices, actions, and results. Always consult your own General Practitioner if you’re in any way concerned about your health.