Surf Vs Work

Though some people can always find time for the water, in our experience if you work for yourself, have a demanding job or lifestyle then getting in for a surf can actually be pretty difficult. Either you feel guilty for taking time off when you could be doing something ‘more productive’, or you just simply just ‘can’t find’ the time.

When we first opened our own company, we found it extremely hard to put aside time for ourselves to enjoy a session. Even though it was a surf school we were running- we still felt naughty jumping in for a quick paddle. In the beginning we needed someone to tell us that it was okay to get in!

Kendall Layt the owner/designer of KOKOH bikinis in an interview with the guys at Surf Careers has a similar issue.

I find it really hard to take time away from work because there’s no-one there to say ‘today’s your day off’ or ‘you have an hour lunch break today’ so rather than needing to be disciplined to get work done, I actually have to be disciplined to take time out, separate myself from work and get in the surf.”

Why Happy Surfers Make Better Workers
Kendall Layt (KOKOH bikinis) find some water time! Photo by – Richard Kotch


SURFER Magazine posted a similar article on How To Skip Work For Surf – listing ways in which you can secretly sneak in a cheeky session between meetings. And though we don’t advise pulling a ”sicky” every time your local break is firing – we do agree that getting some good quality water time whenever possible is a priority which can actually have many professional as well as personal benefits.


The Surfers Happiness Advantage

It’s no secret that surfing makes you feel great, happy and positive, but how does this actually help in the office?

Current research has now shown that our brains actually work better, faster and more accurately when we’re feeling positive. When we feel good we’re more creative and better at solving problems. This has been termed by Shawn Anchor (CEO of Good Think Inc) as the The Happiness Advantage.

Anyone who’s surfed knows that happy feeling you get from dropping into that perfect wave. Founder of Woohoo Inc. Alexander Kjerulf who also happens to be the organisation’s “chief happiness officer” says that happiness is the ultimate productivity booster; That happy employees make better decisions, excel at managing their time, and possess other crucial leadership skills.

Many countries are now also looking into the physiological benefits of surfing to treat PTSD. In France this ‘surf therapy’ is actually being prescribed to people suffering from a range of conditions

Therefore that pre-work dawny or weekend session could be doing more good for you at work than you think! Even Richard Branson says his number 1 secret to better productivity is to keep fit and exercise; Branson himself spends his mornings kitesurfing, swimming, or playing tennis.

Why Happy Surfers Make Better Workers
Ming having a break from work in the Maldives and loving it! Photo – Naahdu Mihadh Ali

Surf Over Work

Most people would work first and as a reward jump in for a surf, why not perhaps instead try it the other way around?

Instead of flogging yourself in the office for hours on end just to justify your next surf session, why not treat yourself to some water time in advance and see the positive benefits at work for yourself.

Don’t work hard to surf and be happy, surf and be happy to work hard.

The next time you paddle out, think of it more as personal and business investment into your own happiness and productivity, you might then find it easier to put aside that time and enjoy your session!

Why Happy Surfers Make Better Workers
Kevin enjoying a fun session before heading back to the office!

Thanks for reading and if you have any tips of advice for getting more surf time, then let us know in a comment below!

See you in the water (hopefully!)


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