Sustainability Could Save Your Life

Which cup of coffee are you on right now? Number three? Four? Twelve? Why? Because you "need" it? Why do you "need" it? Because you don't get enough sleep? Let's keep going. Why don't you get enough sleep? This is where the problem gets a little harder to pinpoint. I would propose the idea that you are drinking a pot of coffee every day because you aren't working in a sustainable fashion.

No, I'm not talking about recycling or composting or saving the world, Captain Planet style. I'm talking about working in a fashion that reuses, reduces, and recycles your most valuable asset: you. 

Sometimes we like to think that we are superheroes, but the reality is: we aren't; we have limits. 

We should start acting like it.

Instead of staying up until 2 A.M. finishing that project, maybe we should save it until the morning and give it the quality of attention it deserves. Instead of taking on four projects at a time, maybe we should delegate a few of them off to others looking for work to get everything done in half the time. 

The purpose of these sustainable practices is to reduce waste in your work day: waste of time, waste of energy, waste of creativity, etc. In order for your business to survive for a long time, you have to start pacing yourself. There is only so much coffee you can drink before you're spend the entire workday in the restroom. All jokes aside, overworking is dangerous business. It can literally kill you. In fact, this occurrence is so common in Japan that they have a word for it: Karoshi ("death by overwork"). 

So put down that coffee, take a breath, and think about what you should prioritize every day at work. Doing so will not only increase your productivity and job satisfaction, but it might even save your life. 

It really isn't as complicated as The Fray made it out to be. But then again, everybody was a little melodramatic in 2005.

-The Intern