Whether you proudly announce it to the world or merely let out a sigh of satisfaction to yourself, saying “done” in an official way has a positive effect on your brain. Giving yourself plenty of “done” moments might even amp up your productivity overall.
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You’re probably familiar with that sensation of relief when you finish a task, but firmly telling yourself that you are “done” can help your brain feel even better. Pyschologist Leslie Sherlin, co-founder of the company SenseLabs, explained to Lisa Evens at Fast Company that saying “done” creates a physiological response in addition to an emotional one:
…when we’re concentrated on a task, the brain’s electrical activity is heightened. But the moment we say we’re done with something, the electrical activity in our brain shifts from being activated and engaged into a more relaxed state.
According to Sherlin, that relaxed brain state looks similar to those who meditate or practice other mindfulness techniques. Serotonin is released, making us feel good and satisfied, building our confidence for the next task. Sherlin suggests that you can take advantage of this feeling by breaking your work down into smaller tasks so you get to say “done” more often. So get after work step by step and celebrate each completed task with a victorious “done.” Your productivity might skyrocket if you build it up enough.