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02 Aug

How to remember to take a break

Date: 2015-08-02 11:49 Comments: 0 st

Do you enjoy working? Do you find it easy to get into a high working-pace where you enjoy the process of doing, checking off, sending, checking off, replying, checking off, compiling, checking off, and so on? Do you sometimes catch yourself suddenly having worked for tree or four hours straight without even getting out of your chair?

You look up from your screen somewhat light-headed and think ”Hm, where am I?”. Well, that last bit might be pushing it, but if it sounds somewhat familiar, you are not alone.

Some of us simply forget taking breaks.

If you do not remember, be reminded
Create some kind of structure that helps you remember to take a break.

If you do not take breaks you will just eventually get tired. Then it will not be as easy to get going with the things you feel you should do. So if you do not take breaks, it will simply be more difficult to do what you need to do.

Do this
Here are four ideas of what you can do to remind yourself.

  • Add a recurring ten-minute meeting in your calendar with an alarm set to ring same time every hour throughout your workday.

  • When you sit down to work, set the timer on your phone to 50 minutes.

  • Once you are working, do so in intervals like in the Pomodoro-technique.

  • There are apps for this as well, such as Break Time for iPhone. I still have not found a good equivalent for Android. Perhaps you know one?

More breaks will mean more done
If you allow a structured method to intentionally remind you and hence make it easier to know when it is time for a break, you will have more energy and be alert for longer periods of time. Well, if you actually take the breaks you are reminding yourself of, that is.

You take your mind off what you are doing and get other impressions not concerned with work. By doing so you will probably get new perspectives on the task you are working with as well. If you put your work aside and read a book for a few minutes while leaning back and relaxing in your chair, don’t be surprised if what you read rubs off on how you solve your task later. Every thing you do simply affects all other things you do.

And your method?
What is your way of remembering to take breaks and lift yourself out of your focused state before it becomes absolutely necessary? Leave a comment and tell us. 

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