Here’s some food for thought…
Did you know when you create too many things to do, you end up getting less done? Did you know scheduling more breaks makes you more productive too?
Research shows that giving yourself time to do nothing and unwind simply allows you to get your work done faster. In other words, scheduling breaks into your workday is crucial for success and highly productive to your business.
Not only that, but breaks also provide many other benefits, including:
- They prevent burnout and ensure high productivity.
- They reduce stress and support creativity.
- They make it easier to put out quality and innovative work.
- They improve your mental health and happiness.
- They help create proper work-life balance and a profitable business.
That’s a lot to put on a lowly 15-minute break from your desk!
But here’s the thing I’ve found… If you don’t schedule your breaks, you won’t take them!
I know for myself, when I get going on something I completely forget to take a break. I can sit for hours if I’m working on a design or building out a website. It’s gotten so bad for me that I don’t even feel the buzz on my fitbit that tells me when I’m supposed to get up and move around.
If you don’t add breaks to your schedule, you won’t take them, and it will only negatively affect your business plan.
Here are 5 tips for scheduling breaks that will help you get the most out of your time:
Tip #1 – 5 to 15 minute breaks are best
Give yourself a short break every 75 to 90 minutes, and don’t let yourself talk yourself out of it. There is plenty of research that shows that short breaks are best because they are long enough to let you unwind but not long enough to allow you to lose motivation and focus.
Tip #2 – Make good use of your short breaks
When it’s time for a break, step away from your work completely. Don’t use this time for anything but give your brain and body the time it needs to relax and recharge. That includes giving your eyes something besides a screen to look at for a few minutes.
Tip #3 – Stick to your scheduled break times
Treat your breaks just as you would any other appointment. Don’t book job tasks over your scheduled breaks, and don’t let your breaks run overtime either. Stick to your schedule and use this time for you only – no guilty feelings allowed.
Tip #4 – Self-care equals business care
There’s that self-care thing again! If you always feel bad about yourself or where you are in life, that will affect your business negatively. Just as taking care of yourself first makes you a better partner, parent, or friend, it also will make you a better business owner. But you must feel good about yourself before you start.
Tip #5 – Know the difference between breaks and disctractions
Breaks and distractions are definitely two different things! Distractions waste your time and prevent you from achieving your goals. The whole point of a break is to unwind and feel refreshed and ready to get your work done, and things that distractions can leave you feeling frustrated and decided unrested by the time you get back to work.
In the end, breaks are beneficial to your productivity and success as a business as long as you actually schedule them and use them efficiently.
So tell me, what’s your favorite way to take a break?
And if you want to do a little more reading on the science of breaks here are a few articles for you:
The Importance of Taking Breaks (The Wellbeing Thesis)
Give Me a Break (American Psychological Association)
Research-Tested Benefits of Breaks (Edutopia.org)
*Note: This post includes affiliate links, for which I will receive a small commission should you make a purchase.