Did you know that a simple renewal break could help you prevent burnout? We live very busy and stressful lives. And the harder we work the more important it is to schedule regular renewal breaks into our schedules. Such breaks are important for accessing our creative energies. And to keep us focused on the things that matter most in our lives.
For example, yesterday I had the most amazing day with my three daughters. After breakfast I took them to the tennis courts for a little playtime. Then after tennis we walked over to the playground for a little swing time. They get a kick out of having me push them as high as they can go on the swing.
After they got bored with the playground we walked over to the putting greens next to our house. We didn’t really putt very much because they just like to whack the ball. Wonder where they got that from?
We did spend a lot of time tickling each other on the grass though. Actually, I was the one doing the tickling. In between whacking the golf balls and our tickling sessions, we laid on the grass admiring the clear blue sky.
The rest of the day involved walking a mile to the ice cream shop. For dinner, they had their favorite meal, corn on the cob and turkey burgers on the grill.
So, when was the last time you spent an entire day completely off the grid? No email, no social media, no text messaging or phone calls. Just an entire day with yourself, your spouse/significant other, or your immediate family. This is a break well worth having.
How can a renewal break prevent burnout?
A renewal break is a complete break from what you’re doing. In order to recharge your batteries and get re-energized, you have to stop what you’re doing. That is, take a break from all focused work.
A renewal break can be as short as five minutes and as long as you want it to be. On a daily basis, I recommend doing focused work for no longer than two hours before taking a short break.Do focused work for no longer than two hours before taking a short break. Click To Tweet
The reasoning behind this is that the body has a daily energy cycle that lasts for 90-120 minutes. So after two hours of focused work you will notice that your focus and concentration will become dramatically impaired.
Instead of trying to override this natural energy low with caffeine, energy drinks and other stimulants, it is best just to take a short break. Go for a walk, socialize with co-workers, and best of all, find a way to play.
Short play moments allow you to forget about your daily worries and responsibilities. They can also be instrumental in helping you find solutions to problems you haven’t been able to solve.
This is one of the reasons why forward-thinking companies like Google have very extensive play areas in the workplace. Encouraging their employees to take short play breaks helps to improve productivity, creativity and the company’s bottom line.Encouraging employees to take short play breaks helps to improve productivity. Click To Tweet
To Prevent Burnout: Take a Day Away from Work
In addition to short play breaks during the day, regular “play days” are also important to rejuvenate you and prevent burnout. So, when was the last time you spend an entire day not thinking about work? Yes, this means no checking emails or doing any work projects at home.
For this to be a renewal break it has to be a complete day of play. Not only must you avoid work, you must also avoid the daily chores that keep you just as busy, overwhelmed and frustrated. These include shopping, laundry, and house cleaning.
A day of play is vitally important to help you feel less overwhelmed by your many work and life responsibilities. And decreasing the feeling of overwhelm is a great way to prevent burnout.A day of play is vitally important to help you feel less overwhelmed. Click To Tweet
On your play day, just try to have fun and do things that you really enjoy doing. With kids, a little bribery goes a long way to get them to do the things that you like.
I like to play tennis, golf and go hiking. I get my kids to come along by bribing them when I need to. An occasional bagel breakfast or mid-afternoon frozen fruit bar usually does the trick.
A once a month play day will help you feel completely recharged and re-energized. You’ll be glad you did; I guarantee it.
For other tips on how to prevent burnout and fuel your life with purpose, passion and play, get a copy of my free e-book, 7 Questions (to ask yourself) to Help you Fuel Your Life with Purpose, Passion & Play.
Also, subscribe to my weekly podcast, Energize Your Life, so you can get them sent directly to you.
Until next time, may the best of your todays be the worst of your tomorrows.
Question: How do you recharge during the day. Leave a comment below please.