If you are feeling burned out, it may be time to take a ‘brain break’. Coaching Trainer and Co-Founder of The Coaching Masters, Liam James Collins, explains the seven benefits of rest
With Christmas just around the corner, we’re entering the busiest and most stressful time of the year.
It’s a time of year where we tend to work harder, work longer, and work tirelessly to ensure our Christmas is as stress-free as possible. Ironic, isn’t it?
we’re entering the busiest and most stressful time of the year
Working at full pelt can take its toll on our bodies and our brains, and with our brain being one of the most important parts of our bodies, it is vital we keep it running efficiently.
Giving yourself a ‘brain break’ and making time to prioritise self-care can include any kind of rest that works for you. Whether that’s going for a walk, watching a film, or taking a nap – time away from work is essential for everyone.
Here are just some of the benefits taking regular ‘brain breaks’ can have…
Benefit #1 Improved health
Rest and sleep play a critical role in the functioning of our immune system and our body’s ability to function at its best.
Taking naps during the day or getting a good night’s sleep can help your body to repair itself and ensure it is functioning optimally, helping to avoid health complications such as diabetes and high blood pressure.
Not only is sleep good for your physical health, but it can also help to improve your mental health. Sleep deprivation can cause you to become more irritable and have a negative impact on your day.
All in all, better sleep equals a better mood and better overall health and wellbeing.
Benefit #2 Helps you reassess your goals
Having a break from any task gives you a chance to step back and get a clearer mind.
During an intense session of work, our minds can get preoccupied, and we tend to lose sight of our goals and priorities, which can affect our productivity.
You can have a million things going on, but taking ten minutes out of your task to step back and reassess what’s most important, can make a huge difference in how your day goes and how much you get done.
a break from any task gives you a chance to step back and get a clearer mind
Taking a break or a chance to reflect can also help you to realise what you need to get done that day, helping to create a clear plan and perhaps give you a newfound viewpoint on any challenges that you need to overcome.
#3 More energy
It comes to no surprise that resting or taking a break will give you more energy. If you put all your time and effort into one task, you may start to feel drained and this can lead to burn out.
Taking a brain break is a good way of allowing your body to recuperate. Remember to listen to your body, whenever you feel tired or overwhelmed.
It is important to take time to recover so that you can function at your best.
Taking a quick ten to 15 minute brain break, whether it be a quick cat nap or just to sit down and relax, is a great way to bounce back and return to your task feeling rejuvenated and ready to go.
#4 Better memory
When we rest or take a break, we typically analyse what we have learnt that day and create memories which help us to take on board what we’ve learnt and apply new skills to tasks going forward.
Ensuring you get enough sleep can help you process all the information you have learned that day and ensure you’re able to store learnings long-term.
In contrast to this, if you don’t rest, you will start to feel the effects of sleep deprivation.
When we rest or take a break, we typically analyse what we have learnt that day
Your memories will become muddled as your brain will not be functioning optimally and creating new avenues for the information it needs to keep hold of.
#5 Improved focus
More often than not, you may find yourself taking on tasks that might not be beneficial for you and what you’re trying to achieve long-term.
It is not uncommon to get distracted and prioritise pointless tasks purely because we feel like we should be working.
Taking a couple of brief breaks during the workday can really help us stop what we’re doing and realise where we should be focused.
This restart in our actions is really beneficial when it comes to managing your workload and will keep you focused and on top or your priorities.
#6 Boosted performance
Have you ever tirelessly gone over the same thing again and again without a solution?
One of the best ways to combat this is by taking a short brain break and zoning out to get a renewed sense of energy and vigour which can boost performance and generate a solution you’ve been desperately searching for all day.
Spending far too much of your time trying to come up with an innovative idea can be counterproductive, with regular breaks allowing solutions to come to you, rather than chasing them.
#7 Reduced stress
Our bodies are not designed to cope with an excessive amount of stress.
If we are constantly on the go and repeatedly triggered and exposed to stress it could be the catalyst of many health and mood disorders.
Try breathing exercises or taking a walk for some fresh air
Recognising your triggers and taking breaks when you start to feel a bit overwhelmed is the best way to stop stress in its tracks.
Doing something you enjoy to combat stress is the best way to overcome it.
Try breathing exercises or taking a walk for some fresh air. Listening to your body is important in controlling your stress levels, so if you feel like you need a break, take one.