The Science of Taking Breaks at Work: How to Be More Productive By Changing the Way You Think About Downtime

I know you don’t want to take a break right now.

Why? Because you’re too busy. This post is probably one of more than a few tabs you have open on your browser or phone. Your to-do list is likely close by and packed with tasks.

Sometimes we know there’s a better way to do things, but we’re just so busy we don’t even think we have the time to find it—so we keep going like we always have.

That’s how …

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Tom Redman is Buffer’s New Android Developer

I’m pleased to announce that Tom Redman has completed his 45-day Buffer Bootcamp and is joining us full-time as Buffer’s Android Developer!

And I’m super pumped to announce that this means we are now 100% focused on building out our Android app! For the longest time, our Android app was on the back burner as I would switch between Android and backend development.  Tom has been the man to bring Android to the forefront!  

In the short time that Tom has …

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3 Life Lessons I Learned From Hitchhiking Through Poland

“Here I am, standing in the middle of nowhere in Poland holding a sign to hitch a ride…sweat dripping, car after car rushing by.. rain is coming in too. What the hell am I doing here…”

Things didn’t look too good then. But let me tell you this story from the start:

In April 2012, I bought tickets to Poland so that I could explore the country by myself, couchsurfing and hitchhiking for 10 days.

Couchsurfing is the largest travel community online, allowing …

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How to Send Better Email – Without Second-Guessing a Single Word

send better emailHave you ever received an amazing email, one that you’d like to print out and pin to your wall, one that made you grin from ear to ear or slow-clap in appreciation and reverence?

When I come across these gems, I drop them into a “Snippets” folder. I study them, I swoon over them, and I borrow bits and pieces of them to send better email.

Now imagine that every email you send is as great as these occasional all-stars you receive.

Impossible? Not at all.

Worth shooting for? Definitely.

At Buffer, we strive for 100 percent awesomeness in the emails we send to customers, and that pursuit of excellence carries over to the emails we send to teammates, colleagues, friends, and family. We want to send better email, the kind that delivers the intended message plus the desired emotion.

So I’m happy to share some of my sources of email inspiration. These are the templates and snippets that have caught my attention over the past few months, and which I’m hoping to include in more of my communication in the inbox. Think you might like to try any of these out in your daily emailing?

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Try an ‘Anti-To-Do List’ To Feel Happier and More Productive

I’ve gradually realized that my day is not occupied only by tasks from my to-do list. Often, there are lots of other tasks that deserve time in my day just as much as those I have in my to-do list. Previously, I found that these extra tasks detracted massively from my feeling of productivity and happiness.

After I read a great article from the guys at iDoneThis, I made some concrete changes and started to feel consistently much more productive. Since then, the Anti-To-Do List has become …

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6 Ways My Brain Stops Me From Creating – And How I’m Fighting Back

I have a lot of ideas in my head. And for the most part, that’s where they used to stay.

In my head. Where other people couldn’t see them, interact with them or build upon them. Where they were safe and untested and uncriticized. All mine.

Sure, I’ve created some. Some might say I’ve created plenty. But that’s only because they can’t see what I’m not creating. For example, this very post sat dormant for at least a month while I pondered, waited and nitpicked at it.

Because the riskiest, most dangerous and potentially most interesting ideas are the easiest to hold back. I would pin them down like butterflies on a mat, like art at a museum. They were in spreadsheets, in notebooks, on scrap paper around my desk.

And while it might feel creative to think of these ideas, they were dying a lonely death when I wasn’t doing anything with them. They didn’t get their chance to add anything to the world. To affect someone. To spark something.

I lost out, too, with this arrangement. I didn’t push myself to think deeper and harder. I lost out on the feedback or insight or even criticism of others. I missed the chance to discover uncharted territory within myself. I stopped before I could start.

It wasn’t the best life I could give my ideas—or myself.

So I decided to change. To find a way forward, I cataloged all the things that had ever stopped me from creating so I could shoot them down, one-by-one. It turned out to be a helpful exercise, so I thought I’d share. Do any of these reasons for not creating something sound familiar to you?

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How We’re Moving from Emails to Conversations: Buffer’s July Happiness Report

July was a month filled with sunshine, life changes, vacations, and yes, Inbox Zeroes, too!

Most of the Heroes took a few days here and there to welcome family, rest and recharge, or travel. Their well-deserved days off did have an impact on the stats, but they scheduled around each other and worked extra hard to hit zero in the inbox every day.

As of this writing, we’ve hit 10 straight weeks of zeroes, at least one per day. I’m super proud …

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Happiness Hacks: The 10 Most Unexpected Ways to Be Happy, Backed By Science

We love happiness at Buffer.

We’ve renamed customer support as customer happiness.

Happiness is baked into our culture and values and the DNA of every person who works on the team.

If there’s a smile to be had or a positive outlook to take, we’ll do our best to find it.

As such, we’re always keen to test out new ways to improve on this value of happiness at work, at play, and at home. We’ve tried science-backed ways to be happier, productive ways to be happier, and lessons from historians, writers, authors, and experts.

Might there even be some unexpected ways to be happy?

I pulled together some research about the many unexpected and counterintuitive ways to find happiness, and I’m happy to share with you what I found. These 10 insights cover a wide range of happy ideas, many of which might seem new and original.

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Buffer’s July Marketing Report: 35,000+ Subscribers, A Blog Redesign and Lots More

July was a month of big changes and big growth for Buffer’s small but mighty team of Content Crafters. Our blogs got a fresh new redesign that allows each post to shine a bit brighter and load faster, and the changes resulted in a big increase in traffic across the board.

A few milestones: On the Buffer Social blog, we reached 35,000 total email subscribers, while Buffer Open saw pageviews topping 100,000 for the first time.

Let’s take a closer look with a dive into the numbers!

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How Measuring Sleep Helped Me Change My Habits

The very first time my Jawbone UP24 vibrated on my wrist, signaling that it was time to get ready for bed, I laughed out loud. I was standing in a pub in central London, beer in hand, and in practical terms, 2 hours from home. Bed time?! Ridiculous!

This is the thing, though. If you want to get 8 hours of sleep, and you want to get up and start your day at an early hour, then 10 p.m. is apparently …

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