Are you tired of struggling to make it through a work day? Do you fizzle out after lunch and notice your work is being affected as well as your relationships? Maybe you just need a new way to spruce up your breaks throughout the day. We have just that! We’re sharing 3 simple work breaks that help you remain productive all day long, while still ensuring you take advantage of your breaks.
Taking breaks throughout your day, whether you work from home or an office, is important as it keeps you focused, motivated and clear-headed during the day. If you manage to take your breaks outside, you’ll reap even more benefits as the sun provides us with more energy (not just a nice tan), and you’ll be able to grab a breath of fresh air which never hurt anybody.
Taking a fun break consists of a couple of minutes of light-hearted conversation with a fellow employee, friend or family member. If you work from home, a pet will do as well. This break is no more than 15-30 minutes where you’re able to laugh, smile and let go of stress from work. Kind of a little reminder that not everything is so serious.
Fun breaks are meant to be fun, so we encourage you to analyze what you enjoy doing. Is there a hobby you used to love but can no longer do as much because of your work schedule? Try making time for the things you enjoy during the daytime. This way you feel more accomplished after work and don’t have to worry about putting it off later on because you’re feeling drained from the work day.
Some of our favourite types of fun breaks are:
Playing with a pet
Watching a light-hearted show (only if you’re able to exercise your self-control and get back to work after the break is up)
Call a friend or family member
Catch up with another employee in the lunch room or common area
Slow breaks are crucial for those extra stressful days. They consist of 15-30 minutes of relaxation, or “slowing down.” This way you’re able to decrease cortisol levels and focus on your mental health as well.
If you notice that your posture is being affected by long hours at the computer, hunching over paperwork or scrolling through social media all day, it can help to focus on straightening your back, engaging your core and paying attention to your posture. Our posture is important especially as we age and avoid the fact that everyone around us is getting grey hair and arthritis. Incorporating some stretches and light yoga in the midst of your work day can do wonders for pain management, headache relief, anxiety and depression, longevity and more.
Some of our favourite ways to enjoy a “slow break” are:
Doing a yoga sequence or short class
Doing some slow stretches to help with posture and stiff muscles
Some meditation to slow your mind
Having a quick nap/ afternoon siesta
Fresh air breaks are some of our favorites! They’re meant to get you outside which is exactly what every person needs in the middle of an intense work day. Honestly, whether you have had an intense work day or not, it’s helpful to get outside and take in the sunlight and fresh air– if not for your stress levels, then for your physical health.
Getting your fresh air break in can be challenging if you live in a northern or chilly climate. However, some things you can consider are how impacted we are by continuously breathing in our own air through masks while indoors (if you have a mask mandate where you work/live), getting deficient in vitamin D and vitamin C, and an increased chance of the blood pooling in your body due to sitting all day. Fresh air breaks are great also for your pets! If you’re looking for a way to spend more quality time with your dog, they’ll definitely enjoy you taking them on daily walks as a part of your fresh air break. In addition to this, if you set a personal goal to lose weight or reduce fat, you can incorporate more fresh air breaks and go on walks daily to get your steps in and increase that calorie burn.
Some of our favourite ways to take a “fresh air” break are:
Taking your dog for a walk
Sitting out on your deck and enjoying the sunlight (in the warmer months)
Hanging out with a family member or pet in your backyard
Shoveling snow (yikes– but gets the job done, and you can cross it off your to-do list)