6 Advantages of Taking Breaks at Work

Breaks at Work

Taking breaks at work are not usually something we think about, much less do. A University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign study shows that taking breaks can dramatically improve one’s productivity and creativity. The CDC recommends taking a five-minute break every hour no matter whether you work at a desk, do heavy construction work or anything in between. You won’t just get more done, you’ll be more productive, focused, happier, healthier, and less stressed.

6 Advantages of taking breaks at work:

  1. Breaks prevent boredom: when you get bored you lose focus and more importantly lose interest in your work. When you come back from a break, you get back in the groove, ideas start flowing again, and you are back into the task at hand.
  2. Breaks help with evaluation: when you work on a task for a long time, you lose focus and end up in the weeds. Taking a 5-minute break allows you to assess if you’re working effectively. An opportunity to reevaluate the situation.
  3. Breaks give your eyes a rest: most of us are staring at a computer or some type of screen and prolonged work without breaks can cause digital eye strain. Taking a break gives your eyes a chance to look at something different and give your body a chance to stretch which improves your health.
  4. Breaks improve the quality of your work: your ability to focus is limited. Your mind begins to wander at some point. The quality of your work is compromised when your focus begins to wane. Taking a break helps you reset, refocus, reenergize.
  5. Breaks lower your stress: It’s important to intermittently disengage from any activity that causes stress. Your ability to work is compromised as your stress rises beyond a certain level and not good for your health over the long haul. Breaks are one way to “switch off from work” to help cope with stress at work.
  6. Breaks can prevent decision fatigue: the need to make frequent decisions throughout your day can wear down your willpower and reasoning ability which can lead to simplistic decision-making and procrastination.

Breaks will increase your productivity, creativity, and quality of work. It’s easy to say, I don’t have time for breaks, I have too much to do. Do your own study. Day 1, take no breaks and track your productivity. Day 2, take a 5 minute break every hour and track your productivity. My bet is you will see an increase. Give yourself a break today and enjoy the many benefits taking regular breaks provides.