Career success does not lie in working longer hours, says Robert Lechler, president of the UK Academy of Medical Sciences, as part of a diversity initiative urging researchers to embrace outside interests. On 23 February, the academy launched the campaign, called #MedSciLife, to promote dynamic working practices. Lechler says in a special issue in The Lancet that time spent outside work nourishes creativity, builds resilience and offers fresh perspectives on problems (R. Lechler Lancet 389, S1; 2017). These are “precisely the skills that result in the best-quality research”, he writes. “A life outside science is not an extra.” The campaign website offers personal stories and resources for medical researchers and those who are considering the field as a career. “I find science pretty stressful,” says Paul Martin, a cell biologist at the University of Bristol, UK, in a post on the site. “So I have several hobbies to 'escape' work.” As part of the campaign, photographs of early-career medical-science researchers in their work and personal lives are exhibited at the academy's headquarters in London.