Enjoy All the Moments: How to Find Gratitude in Any Task

When I look back on the times I’ve done the most productive work on my startup, it has always been when I’ve had a great balance of work and rest. It has also been at times when I have genuinely been enjoying the moment. Steve Jobs suggests that in order to do great work, we should love doing the work: “Work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work, and the only way to do great work is to love what…

Continue Reading →

5 Surprising Tricks To Increase Your Motivation Immediately, According to Fresh Research

This is not a post to help you keep your New Years’ Resolutions.

Instead, it presents simple tips and exercises to increase your motivation, all of which you can do in the next few minutes. Researchers have discovered some quick ways to get you to be more focused and more motivated at what you do so that you can work smarter, not harder.

Some of these motivation tips take seconds to do. Some others require that you get out of your chair for a few minutes. All of them are derived from the results of recent scientific studies.

Get ready to get more done. We’ll start right now.

Continue Reading →

Why Sleep Matters So Much and 15 Things We’re Improving This Week

We’ve talked in the past about how often exercise and reading pop up on our self-improvement lists at Buffer. Another element you’ll almost always spot on our goals list is sleep—getting more sleep, getting to sleep earlier or getting into a better sleep routine are a few popular variations on the theme.

Curious why sleep matters so much to us? It goes back to one of Buffer’s core values, one of which is “Live smarter, not harder.”

Buffer culture live smarter not harder

I take a lot of inspiration from that top point about “waking up fresh over working that extra hour.” In a remote, distributed team, it can be a challenge to switch off and give yourself time to enjoy downtime, hobbies or even an early bedtime.

But getting a good night’s sleep is worth working on—it can make us more focused, more creative and a lot happier!

If you feel challenged by sleep like some of us at Buffer do from time to time, here are a few resources that might help:

Here’s what each Buffer team member is working on this week!

We love hearing your improvement goals, too—tell us about them in the comments so we can cheer you on and learn from your goals!

Continue Reading →

How We Stay in Sync as a Distributed Team: The Buffer Daily Pair Call

Most companies have meetings of some sort. Many startups have daily standups. As a fully remote and distributed team with members in a variety of countries, continents and time zones, Buffer meetings have to be a bit different by necessity. When the team was much smaller (like 7 people), Buffer held daily standup meetings with the whole team. Eventually time zone differences between the US, UK and Asia made it impossible to find a good time of day to meet. We thought about how we could keep the face-to-face aspect that is so key in a distributed team, and from that thought…

Continue Reading →

How and Why to Create a Sleep Ritual

My first post on my personal blog was one where I pondered whether exercise is a requirement for sleep. The post was actually triggered by my inability to sleep, and I wrote it in the middle of the night. Since then, I have made a number of adjustments and I now sleep much better, so I’d like to share what I’ve changed. Why create a sleep ritual? As an early stage startup founder, I’ve found the emotional ups and downs to be incredible. In my experience so far in building Buffer, there have been many different events which have caused…

Continue Reading →

Buffer’s June Investor Update: 7% MRR, Introducing Daily and More

June was a great month, here’s the latest: Traction update New users: 60,530 (Total: 1,598,049, from 1,537,519: +3.9%) Daily active users: 39,752 (up from 39,559: +0.5%) Monthly active users: 158,894 (down from 160,241: -0.8%) Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR): $303,000 (Annual: $3,636,000 up from $3,396,000: +7.0%) Cash in bank: $715,000 (last month: $653,000) Team size: 25 people across 5 continents We’ve been super happy to keep up consistent MRR growth, with 7% growth again this month. We also broke past $300k in MRR, which is a big milestone for us to reach. We’re excited to keep pushing forward here. The bank balance is also continuing to grow, which is very…

Continue Reading →

My Month of Minimalism: How I Decluttered My Life

I have a lot of stuff. That’s not really meant to be a brag—far from it. More just a statement of fact. Amazon deliveries arrive all the time. Knickknacks and little gifts and random tchotzkes take over spaces. I can’t stop buying art. And plants. And why do I have so many nail polishes? It’s one of life’s mysteries. You probably have a lot of stuff, too. When did life start to feel so overstuffed? When I discovered The Minimalists recently via an interview in Slate about their new book, their philosophy immediately struck a chord with me. I especially…

Continue Reading →

How Successful People Start Their Day: The Best Morning Routines for Feeling Great and Getting Work Done

Whether you’re a morning person or a night owl, we all start our day at some point. And we all seem to start it differently.

Some of us hop online to check social media, others dive in to email, still others eat breakfast, exercise, or pack lunches for the kids. There’re a million different ways a morning could go.

Which morning routine might be best?

While there’s probably not an ideal morning routine that fits everyone, we can learn a lot from the morning routines of successful people as well as from the research and inspiration behind starting a morning on the right foot.

I collected a wide range of opinions on how best to start a day, from the scientific to the successful. Here’s the best of what I found—maybe it’ll help you get a little more productivity, creativity, and enjoyment out of your morning.

Continue Reading →

The Power of Reading (And 16 Things We’re Improving This Week)

Escaping into a good book is one of my favorite activities, so I could hardly believe it when I learned that working at Buffer meant a free Kindle and the license to grab any book I wanted, anytime! (In fact, I snagged two today.)

You’ll notice that reading shows up again and again in our improvements—fiction and non-fiction, business books and pleasure reading.

Why? Because we know that reading makes us better writers and can even change how we act in life. For lots of us, it also helps us sleep. :)

Need a little reading inspiration? Here’s what we’re reading:

Follow Buffer’s board What Buffer is Reading on Pinterest.

Here are 28 life-changing books recommended by our awesome community:

28 life changing books

And here are the best tips we have to offer on reading more and remembering what you read.

Happy reading!

Buffer team weekly improvements

Here’s what each Buffer team member is working on this week!

We love hearing your improvement goals, too—tell us about them in the comments so we can cheer you on and learn from your goals!

Continue Reading →

The Simple Reason We Share Administrative Tasks Throughout the Whole Team

Earlier this year, Buffer had a job opening for a position we (at the time) called “Life Saver.” That person, we thought, was going to work in lots of different and important areas to help keep Buffer running smoothly—things like helping to plan our multiple annual retreats, helping us to find awesome new team members and more. Then we decided to go in a different direction and share administrative tasks, distributing them throughout the whole team. The reason? Fun. As Joel and Leo explain in this Founder Chat video, the book Joy at Work had a lot to do with…

Continue Reading →