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How about a small break?

Updated: Oct 18, 2022

After a very very long break due to the lockdown, when things were opening up, I was all prepared and get into the hustle mode. College, drama rehearsals, dance classes, internships, I was excited for all it. And all this excitement led to a super packed schedule where I was working continuously 7 days a week.

I had forgotten to take a break, and after a month of constant work it all came crashing to me. I was tired all the time, I couldn’t sleep and I was so frustrated. I was doing everything I loved but felt so guilty for feeling tired, unenthusiastic and frustrated.

Unfortunately or fortunately I couldn’t just leave everything and take a vacation. So that’s when I started planning my breaks. I made a ritual of these late afternoon coffees. Sipping my coffee with or without a company, looking at the crowd rush on streets, discussing further plans of the day or just enjoying the silence. These breaks made me stop for a while and breathe and look around. Just like the calm in the middle of the storm, these coffee breaks became my calm, my moments of peace.

That’s when I realized how some small moments like these can recharge my energy. How I could love my work and still need a break. And how doing nothing for a while can open up my mind to so many new ideas. Whilst I was working on this I came across a research by Schwartz and McCarthy on “Maintaining your Energy not your Time”. According to this research, Organizations are demanding ever-higher performance from their workforces. People are trying to comply, but the usual method—putting in longer hours—has backfired. Schwartz and McCarthy recommend these practices for renewing four dimensions of personal energy: Physical Energy, Emotional Energy, Mental Energy and Spiritual Energy. Various solutions for maintaining your Energy are provided in the research, some of them are-

• Reduce stress by engaging in cardiovascular activity at least three times a week and strength training at least once.

• Eat small meals and light snacks every three hours.

• Fuel positive emotions in yourself and others by regularly expressing appreciation to others in detailed, specific terms through notes, e-mails, calls, or conversations.

• Allocate time and energy to what you consider most important. For example, spend the last 20 minutes of your evening commute relaxing, so you can connect with your family once you’re home.

• Respond to voice mails and e-mails at designated times during the day.

We never realize how these small things have great effect on us. We tend to cancel out that 10-15 min break just by thinking how much that will affect us, how much helpful it might be. But you have no idea how influential it can be to rejuvenate you. So it’s about time we take that small break and be fully present in it.

-Abhidnya Girme

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1 Comment

Mar 20, 2022

Such a beautiful blog!!!I'm definitely going to use these insights to make life better for my organization!

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