We’ve been communicating for quite some time, so I know you remember my stance on indulgences. I stress the importance of eating and training with a purpose, but I also generally value releasing nutrition inhibitions from time to time.
The same can and should be said for work.
I, like many of you, can wake up with thoughts of work, spend the day productively grinding and hit the pillow with thoughts of both the past day’s events and tomorrow’s labor related happenstances. Our minds literally never stop and recover. This can be problematic. From Forbes:
Truth is, most of us need an occasional break. The American Psychological Association has found that three-fourths of Americans have experienced physical symptoms resulting from stress—from headaches to more severe chronic illnesses—and most people list work as a top source of stress.
I don’t believe a “mental health day” is the only way to manage work related stress and fatigue. I do think awareness is immeasurably important. Prioritizing recovery time, much in the same vein as we do with weight training, can actually increase productivity and make us better at our jobs.
Time for me to raise my hand. I’m a workaholic. Work productivity is rewarding to me; I seek it out for that reason. Recently, however, I’ve made a conscious effort to get in the ocean and swim for a bit as a break. I’m lucky enough to be able to take 90 minutes or so in the middle of the day to walk down to the beach. This is rebuilding time for me. When I arrive back to my computer, I feel invigorated and capable of producing better content. My walk and swim classify as exercise, of course. From the Globe and Mail:
Four new studies presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Vancouver confirm that exercise helps to prevent low mental function that’s caused by stress and aging. Schedule at least three workouts – cardio or weight lifting – every week for three weeks. The productivity and energy that exercise brings far outweighs the loss of a half hour from your day.
Most people don’t have the luxury of an ocean swim, of course. Look, indulgences don’t have to be unhealthy, but they don’t have to be exercise related, either. Whatever your break activity of choice is, carve out time daily to step away from your grind. If it’s 30 minutes of The League, so be it. The idea is to stop the mind repetitions.
If you regularly peruse this blog, chances are you’re relatively driven anyhow. It’s just as likely you need the reminder to take your foot off the gas as you do to stomp on it.
Either way, I’m here. Talk to you tomorrow.