Forget Fidget Spinners — Find Stress Relief Without the Hype

As a creative thinker in the advertising world, it’s my firm belief that fidget toys are essential to a more productive day. In fact, there is plenty of research that supports the use of these gadgets during the day to help keep you focused — for real, just Google it.

I recently did some recon around the office to see everyone’s preferred method to relieve stress and restlessness. From putty to violent quote books, here are our top recommendations:


Stress/Spike Balls

Always a classic — stress balls are the perfect tool to keep the juices flowing in brainstorm sessions. We keep a basket full in the conference room, so they’re within arm’s reach in creative emergencies.


Embrace Your Inner Nerd

Be proud of your nerdiness. Let your freak flag fly. Interactive Project Manager Tony Tandeski, is the king of all things Minecraft, Star Wars and Mario Kart. One of his stress relievers is his collection of desk characters. Be sure to check out Des Moines’ new Boxlunch store to gather all the top collector’s items.


Aaron’s Thinking Putty

This is my personal favorite. Imagine if Silly Putty and Play-Doh had a baby, that’s basically what Aaron’s Thinking Putty is. Think non-slimy clay that doesn’t dry out or stick to your hands. This is a perfect squishy desk toy — not to mention it’s fun to watch.


Quote Books

Need some mid-day motivation? Keep a daily quote journal or book around. Sometimes a few inspiring quotes offer the perfect pick-me-up. Digital Producer Ryan Adam’s pick? Screw Calm and Get Angry.



The old tried and true, pen and paper method never fails either. Interactive Director Emily Nichols loves to doodle when the opportunity arises. That is how she hones her famous calligraphy skills. Not the artistic type? Add some beautiful lettering to your environment instead — check out Emily’s store, Hello Confetti!


Actual Children’s Toys

Never question the oddities of your Creative Director. You’ll find Joe Winn fidgeting with his colored bead chain while cranking out the next big idea. Whatever this thing is, it seems to be working. 


Standing Desks

Sometimes you just need to get up. Want to try a standing desk, without the hefty price tag commitment? Try the Spark by Ergodriven desk! Account Manager Jared Bramer introduced this desk to the office — it’s actually made from cardboard and very simple to assemble. Despite some skepticism of durability, I will agree it was worth the $20 investment.


Why is this a blog post?

Right now, you might be thinking wow, those Flynnies never get any work done. Not true — we kick creative butt every dang day. After 110 years in the business, we’ll do whatever it takes to keep new ideas in the works, so don’t knock it until you try it! Before you know it, everyone will want to stop by and play for a while.


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