our brains have a lot on their plates. from keeping up with the latest news, keeping tabs on our social media pages, and making sure we get things done at work—our minds can easily become a bit overwhelmed!
thankfully, there's an easy way to help them out: taking mini breaks throughout the day. I'll explain why these breaks are important and how you can incorporate them into your routine.
taking frequent mind breaks can improve your well-being.
one study looked at employees who took a brief walk every hour and found that they were more productive and creative than their peers. mind breaks can also help you feel more relaxed, as well as allow you to think more clearly and concentrate better on your work.
most research shows that taking frequent mini-mind breaks throughout the day is beneficial both mentally and physically. this may include simply playing with your pet, going outside to watch nature, or having a snack (like eating a piece of fruit).
taking a quick walk.
if you are feeling stressed or overwhelmed, taking a quick walk can help. walking has been shown to lower levels of stress and increases feelings of calm. it also gets your blood flowing, which can get your mind moving more clearly as well.
taking a walk does not have to be a long commitment—even just 15 minutes will do the trick! so if you’re feeling tense up, take some time away from your desk (or computer screen), put on some comfortable shoes, and go for a short stroll around the block.
looking up and away from your screen at something beautiful.
looking up and away from your screen at something beautiful is as simple as it sounds. you’ll be amazed by how much you can see just by looking up, whether it be a photo of a nature scene or an actual plant in your office or home. you can also try looking at artwork, such as paintings or sculptures on display in the office.
deep breathing is the most effective way to reduce stress. to practice deep breathing, breathe in through your nose and fill up your abdomen, then let out a long breath through your mouth. when you are stressed or anxious, try taking a few minutes to slow down and just breathe deeply.
doing a head-to-toe body scan.
- sit or stand comfortably.
- close your eyes, and bring your attention to your body from head to toe.
- notice where you feel the tension in your body, and breathe into that area.
- relax the muscles of that area by counting from 1 to 10 while taking long, deep breaths.
- repeat as needed until you feel completely relaxed again!
laughing with a friend.
laughter is the best medicine. laying around on the floor laughing with your friends is a great way to feel better when you're feeling bad: it lowers stress levels, boosts your immune system, increases happiness, and improves your mood. laughter has been shown to boost self-esteem as well.
laughing also reduces pain by releasing endorphins – those feel-good hormones that decrease pain signals between nerves. so if you're struggling with chronic back pain or some other kind of injury or ailment, taking some time out for a few laughs may just be what you need!
this is just one example of how we can use data to make a good decision. By taking a few minutes to think about what the data shows us, we’ve found that anyone can take breaks from their day-to-day activities. we hope this article will inspire you to start taking mini mind breaks today!
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