Thursday, January 03, 2008

How to Develop Healthier Ergonomic Habits

Tips for maintaining ergonomic health ...

"Developing good work methods and work styles are just as important in staying healthy and pain-free at your computer as obtaining the correct ergonomic equipment. Initially it takes energy, commitment and motivation to develop new habits. However, according to Answers.com, the definition of a habit is a recurrent, often unconscious pattern of behavior. With enough repetition and time, the new and healthier actions are performed without thought.

Here are some tips to help ease the pathway when attempting to develop new habits. Then visit the Typing Styles link for specific tips on improving your keyboard habits.

According to Stephanie Burns, an on-line educator who has written on learning strategies, goal achievement and self-motivation lists, these three core strategies are essential for building new habits.

* Decide on the habit you would like to develop and be specific with your description.

* Develop triggers to help you remember to perform the action at the time the action needs to be performed. Initially, you will most likely need external triggers to help remind you of the action.

* Motivate yourself to act. Tricks such as the following can help get you through the initial 21 to 28 days of repetition that is required to move an action from conscious thought to unconscious performance.

o Set alarms, write notes, or ask friends to call and remind you.
o Make the habit part of a ritual - do the activity in the same place, same time, and in the same surroundings if possible for the first few weeks.
o Acknowledge that changing behavior is difficult to do and give yourself a reward for each action moving you in the right direction. Celebrate the positive changes, both large and small.
o Make the new action easy to do.
o Or make the habit you are trying to break difficult to perform.
o Notice and acknowledge what is working.
o Do not worry about what others may think."    (Continued via BellaOnline, Marji Hajic)    [Ergonomics Resources]

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