5 Easy Ways To Schedule In More Down Time

Has this ever happened to you?  You sit down to work and before you know it you look up at the clock and you cannot figure out how it got to be 2:00 in the afternoon? Do you run from one meeting to another, answering a zillion e-mails and texts in between and go go go go go go go? If you are like most of us, you go and go and go.  You probably use “breaks” to get more stuff done and eat lunch at your desk (if you even eat lunch) and cram in work to every available minute of work time.  Well, we have good news for you.

relax timeIt’s Time to Take a Break!

Literally.  Breaks are not only crucial to give your body and mind a rest, but studies now show that take breaks actually boosts productivity.    So, here are 5 ways to sneak in work breaks into your routine.  Ready?

 

  1. Deliberate Vs. More Work

Musicians have been tapped into a secret that works!  Rather thanHands playing the piano (close-up) practice more, they practice very deliberately.  Which means that they start with the problem areas, and tackle those passages first.  This allows them have periods of intense practice (work) times followed by breaks rather than diluting their practice over the course of the day. So, make sure your work is focused, planned and deliberate vs. just being plain old busy busy busy.

2. 60/90 Minute Rule We’ve written about this before, but the concept is to manage your energy vs your time.   Studies show that after 60 – 90 minutes, we lose our ability to focus and our productivity starts to wane.  So try working for 60 – 90 minutes and then take a 10 – 20 minute break and hunker down again. Try making an accountability chart where you write in what you plan to accomplish in your 60 – 90 minutes and schedule that in, including the break time.  This will keep you on track!  Trust us.  It works!

3. Schedule Lunch AWAY From Your Desk Time for Lunch ConceptYup.  You read that right.  For all of you out there who type with one hand and hold your sandwhich in the other, STOP!  Eat away from your desk.  Go to the cafeteria, nearby restaurant, local park or eat with a buddy.  This will help your digestion, stress levels and in the end, productivity.

4. Working Break You don’t have to always stop working to give your body a break.  This is what we call a working break.  You can easily stand while being on the phone or reading an e-mail.  Put your printer far away from your desk.  Get up and go talk to your co-worker.  Have a walking meeting.  The list goes on and on.  Be creative to think of ways to get out of your chair while still being productive.  Your body will thank you!

5. Actually Schedule Breaks slow down and relaxSounds simple, but giving yourself permission to take a break and unplug for 15, 20 or even 30 minutes) at least once or twice in your day is a total game changer. You can use this time to rest, meditate, walk, visit with a friend, close your eyes, listen to music, read or exercise.  The idea is to take a complete break from work both mentally and physically so that when you return, you are recharged and ready to go!

So, how do you manage your breaks?  Do you even take breaks?  Not sure where to start, let us know in the comments and we’ll help! Now, if you don’t mind, it’s time for a break!   4577

Until the next time, Vivienne & Andrew

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