Dr. Dawn Brown is a Child/Adult Psychiatrist and Serial Entrepreneur. She’s the CEO/Owner of ADHD Wellness Center & Mental Healthletics™.
Work, for many of us, is more than just the means to survival, often being the main source of a sense of purpose. Assigning such high importance to our work tasks can make it really difficult to take a break, even when one is sorely needed.
Going from one thing to another, we can actually convince ourselves that this non-stop hustle is necessary. But by putting productivity front and center, we miss out on the incredible benefits of breaks.
More Enjoyable Days For A Happier Life
Your life is composed of every little moment you experience. Without intentionally choosing the joyful moments that can be enjoyed when taking a break from work, joy may simply not be found. It’s not likely to be hiding inside of that stressful new project.
I believe if you want a happy life, you need to step away from the workload sometimes and seek out ways to really enjoy the days beyond work.
Improved Mental And Physical Health
A break every now and then isn’t just helpful toward finding happiness though; it can also be essential to your health. When we’re putting our all into work, we may push our own selves to the back burner. While we may need to make sacrifices every once in a while for a big assignment, routinely sacrificing sleep, proper meals and other self-care habits can add up and do more harm than good.
When stress begins to build up and your well-being starts to suffer, a break may be exactly what you need. In my experience, giving some time to yourself can sometimes be the best thing you can do for yourself — and for the work too!
It seems pretty counterintuitive that taking time away from work would help you get more done. But working while you’re tired and stressed out could never allow you to perform at your best. A simple break to refresh and refocus can allow you to come back into the hustle with renewed vigor and stronger performance overall. If you really want to succeed at your work, you should never underestimate the benefits of a break.
Ensuring You Get All The Benefits Of A Break
Now that you understand the beneficial nature of breaks, you’re surely ready to start stuffing your schedule with time off, instead of unlimited stress. So, how do you do it? How can you make sure you really reap the rewards? Start by truly committing to getting in those break times.
• Set aside the time.
If you let workload dictate your schedule for the whole day, showers will be skipped, lunch will be overlooked and you’ll be running your work day into those evening hours before you know it. Busy professionals all know the importance of time management. The key is recognizing it as more than just a tool for maximizing productivity.
Especially when you have a lot going on, you’ll need to specifically plan for breaks. Take control and block them off in your calendar if you have to.
• Plan the right activities.
As part of your routine throughout the week, it’s essential to make sure you’re tending to your personal needs, such as getting plenty of sleep, making time to really move your body and fully enjoying your meals. Whenever you’re stuck on a problem or simply find yourself losing focus, it can also help to get away with a break, such as a short walk, a quick meditation session or a fun trip out.
Of course, an actual vacation can be a game changer. When it comes time to set the to-do list aside for a more extended period, don’t let anything hold you back from full enjoyment!
• Leave the guilt behind.
After all, we know now there’s no reason to feel guilty about breaks at all. Pressing pause on all those work tasks lets you return to full capacity and gives the job the effort it really requires.
It can be scary to say “no” to something that demands to be added to the schedule, but the benefits of a break certainly make it worth it. So, leave the guilt behind and get as much out of your breaks as you can!