Today, especially in America, the ideals about work ethic are “work harder,” “work longer,” and “don’t miss the deadline.” What if we flipped the script? What if our work became more efficient and we came up with better ideas? Well, we can. Just take a break. Studies have shown that taking breaks throughout your workday can be highly beneficial. Here are some reasons why:

  1. Creativity Flow. Feeling stuck? You keep trying and trying to find a solution, but you just can’t come up with one. Take a break. Creativity can flow more steadily when you release the tension and free up your mind. After your break, you may be surprised to find out that you’ve come up with a creative solution to your problem.
  2. Mental Health. When you are constantly “go, go, go,” your brain stays on overdrive. This leads to the potential collapse of your mental health when you’ve pushed yourself too far. If you don’t have good mental health, your performance will most certainly suffer. Giving your brain time to release from the work can be just what you need to clear your mind and stay healthy.
  3. Process Information. Have you read the same sentence over and over, and what it says isn’t clicking? You guessed it, take a break. When you return, you will have had a moment to think of other things, and processing your work information will become much easier.
  4. Healthy Habits. When you take a break, you release your eyes from the screen, stand up, stretch, and walk around. This is all good for the body, and if you continue to take regular breaks, you will get into the habit of doing these good things for your body. No cell phone, just you giving your body what it needs.
  5. You’ll quickly drain when you don’t get a second to breathe. You become sluggish and slow. Taking a break can increase productivity by removing yourself from the work and getting a moment to reset. You’ll come back rested and ready for the next task.

If your work does not allow breaks, check with your state to determine what regulations are in place to protect employees. Let your company/boss know that you and your fellow co-workers can become much more efficient employees with scheduled (or unscheduled) breaks! So take a breath, and definitely take a break.