I just came across this post on the Harvard Business Review blog. It’s a great example of how you can self-track and learn about how changes in your workplace behavior can enhance your productivity. In this case, it was wearing headphones. The author used RescueTime to keep track of his productivity levels, which of course we love, but aside from that it shows how doing experiments on yourself doesn’t have to be complicated.
I’m interested in trying this one myself. A lot of people have anecdotal evidence that wearing headphones helps them block out distractions (I’ve even seen some people say that wearing them unplugged can be beneficial, simply because it causes others to think twice about interrupting you).
I’d also be curious to explore what genres of music are more conducive to productivity. I’ve read that classical and instrumental music is the best, because your brain doesn’t have to try to focus on lyrics. On the other hand, sometimes a good dose of high-energy punk rock is exactly what I need to get excited about tackling what’s in front of me.
If you’d like to use RescueTime for you own experiments, sign up here.