Everyone’s heard the warning: You need to take breaks at work. If you don’t you’ll get burned out. It’s not good for you to work too long. But we’ve all fallen victim to the phenomenon of getting so wrapped up in work that you just say “I’m fine, I don’t need a break” on next thing you know you’ve been sitting at your desk for six hours straight. Guess what. Science says you need breaks, and here’s why.
1. They Give You A Different Perspective
There’s “in the zone” and then there’s “zoned out.” It’s easy to fall into the second category if you’ve been working without a break for too long, and it gets you into a rut with your thinking. Taking a 10-minute break gets you out of your head a bit, and could even give you a different perspective for attacking your to-do list.
2. They Keep You From Getting Bored By Your Work
When you’re stuck behind your desk doing the same things over and over, you’re going to get bored. Same as you did in school. And being bored isn’t going to help productivity one bit. But taking a break lets your mind rest from the daily grind, and means you’ll have a better attitude about getting back into it.
3. They’re More Likely To Give You A Burst Of Inspiration
Ever heard of genius striking when you least expect it? Well, you probably expect it to happen while you’re actually working. But if you’ve been at it for too long, your brain gets tired, and the ideas stop flowing. Giving yourself a break means there’s more of a chance for your mind to relax, step back – and suddenly land on the solution to that problem you’ve been mulling over for the last few hours.
4. It Can Actually Boost Energy
Tell me if this sounds familiar: you’re sitting at your desk, staring at the computer screen, and you can’t seem to keep your eyes open. It’s a common tale, and it means it’s time for a break. When you sit stationary for a while at a desk, your body (and mind) slows down, and even the strongest coffee can’t always help. You know what does? Getting up and walking around for a few minutes.
5. They Help You Stick To A Schedule
One of the biggest threats to productivity is not having a schedule. When your day is just open and unstructured, it’s easy to get bored or lose interest. But if you schedule a few breaks throughout the day, you’ll have something to look forward to – and knowing you’re coming up on a break can actually make you work harder in between.
6. They’re Better For Your Eyes!
More and more people spend work hours staring at a screen these days, and spoiler alert – it’s not good for you. Your eyes get strained after being exposed to the blue light of electronics, and when your eyes get strained, they get tired and it’s harder to stay focused. So step away from the screen every once in
7. And The Big One…Taking Breaks Reduces Stress
We’ve all heard about how stress levels are going through the roof – and while taking a break might sound like something that would only exacerbate that problem, it could actually be a solution. Many people build up stress about many things they can’t actually control, and the best solution for that is to simply move away from the stress for a little while.
What other pros do you think there are to taking breaks at work? Tell us in the comments below! And If you like to make snacking part of your breaks at work, check out our office snack plans!
Feature image by Flickr user slightly everything