Take a Break!
Do you feel guilty for walking away from your desk during your workday? Do you ever find yourself working away and when you look up, the whole day has passed and you realize that you skipped lunch... again? How many times have you found yourself taking work home with you, and putting in hours long after the workday is done?
Some people have the misconception that this kind of commitment to our jobs represents a strong work ethic and produces the best results. False! This kind of dedication actually often leads to an unhealthy work-life balance and burnout.
So, if you have found yourself doing any of the examples above, try to mindfully incorporate even small breaks throughout your day. Even just 5-10 minutes every hour or so can:
Reduce the negative physical aspects of too much sitting. Constant sitting puts you at higher risk of heart disease, diabetes, depression, and obesity. Even a quick walking break can improve circulation and jump start your metabolism.
Help improve your reasoning ability and decision-making. Returning to a tricky problem after a quick head break can provide a fresh perspective.
Restore motivation. The feeling of pressure and overwhelm that accompanies a long to-do list can be alleviated by just giving yourself permission to take a break.
Boost productivity. It may seem counter-intuitive, but research suggests that working for long stretches without breaks leads to stress and exhaustion. Taking regular breaks actually increases the level of engagement which, in turn, is highly correlated with productivity.
So, go ahead, take a break and watch this video for my Leadership Essentials series on why breaktime matters!