How To Take a Break at Work
You may have seen surfers hanging out in the ocean just sitting on their boards. Sure, they may be out there chatting it up or resting but most likely they are caught in a lull. It’s a period between sets of waves when they are too small or non-existent. Lulls are a great time to relax and catch your breath because the next set of waves are churning up. These lulls have been vital to me, paddling out takes a lot of energy. I need the break when I get past the impact zone.
Although you may have waves of work coming at you all day. It’s important to look for a lull. A time you can catch your breath and take a break. The brain can take about 90 minutes concentration before it begins to move into lower levels of focus. After periods of focused concentration, take a break. Breaks are vital to the brain to recharge and refresh. A lull can actually boost your productivity.
What to do on a work break…
Schedule time in your day for breaks.
Between tasks, move away from your desk. Walk around the office.
If you’re an extrovert, go chat with someone.
If you’re an introvert, read a few pages of a book.
Grab healthy snacks.
Take a look at Tony Schwartz’s article called The 90 minute solution: How Building in Periods of Renewal Can Change Your Work and Your Life http://huff.to/1ilkvMS. He wrote a very interesting book called The Way We’re Working Isn’t Working. And it does feel like that sometimes, when our energy wanes and we keep pushing through a project-all day long. No wonder we feel exhausted. Schwartz struggled to write his first two books, working 10 to 12 hour days. By intercepting his work with breaks, he was able to complete his last book in 6 months.
Think about what are your optimal times in the day to take a break. Schedule it into your calendar. Think about the ways you want to spend that time. Let me know what do you do during your lulls and breaks at work.
Margo Crawford is a Productivity Consultant and Professional Organizer, with Wave Productivity. She works with entrepreneurs, small business owners and business professionals to help them get more focused, organized and productive in their workplace. In person she serves the Phoenix, Providence and Boston area and coaches by phone nationally. If you would like to be more productive at your desk. Call 602-677-8275 or email [email protected] for an appointment.