Career Woman

8 Ways to fit 5-Minute time-outs in your work day


Over the last few decades especially, technology has drastically changed every area of our lives, from our personal lives to our professional lives. It’s changed how we work and even what types of jobs are available.

And at the current rate of technological change, the odds of a robot taking over your job are pretty high — especially if you have a highly repetitive job (such as if you’re an accountant, paralegal, or bookkeeper). But no one is quite sure exactly when these types of jobs are likely to be replaced. So for now, you still have to go to work and carry on.

But all of this technology can have a serious toll on our work life. We’re constantly plugged in, which can often leave us feeling drained and overworked. So, how can we help to combat this? One of the easiest ways is by taking short breaks throughout our work days. Although you might think that taking breaks are counterproductive, they’ll actually help you to work more efficiently and be more productive.

Here are 8 ways you can take short breaks that will help you to stay motivated and functioning at your best:

1. Stretch it out

Sitting for long hours at the computer can put serious strain on your back and neck, not to mention the rest of your body. But for now, focus on stretching your back, neck, and hands to avoid cramping and pain. Do a few stretching reps for each area every day and you should start to see some improvement with how you’re feeling.

2. Drink water and relax

Whether you’re on the move or at your desk all day, we can often forget to drink enough water when we’re too busy being focused on other tasks. This can quickly leave you feeling dehydrated, which will lead to fatigue, slow brain activity, and lack of motivation. To help you remember, bring a large water bottle with you and keep track of how much you’re drinking — and make time for it!

3. Take a short walk

There’s nothing like a short walk to help you feel more motivated and energized in minutes. Walk up and down some stairs to really get your blood pumping, or else get outside if you can. Some fresh air will help to wake you up when you’re feeling tired, and if it’s sunny out, you’ll feel an instant mood boost.

4. Read the news

Yes, this includes everything from what’s going on locally, nationally, and internationally to checking sports updates. If you’re a huge NFL fan, read up on news and statistics online or compare odds for your teams in the AFC North division when you have some down time. There’s nothing like checking out how your favorite team is doing for a little midday pick me up.

5. Meditate/Breathe deeply

Work can often be stressful, especially if you have a dozen or more deadlines you’re trying to balance at once. Even just five minutes of meditation or deep breathing — where you’re focused on nothing else but that task — can help you to refocus and de-stress. You’ll feel more centered and better able to handle your workload.

6. Do something you love

If, in your down time, you love scrolling blogs, clothing websites, or Instagram, take a few minutes to check out the sites you love. It’ll put a smile on your face and help you to feel a little better because you’re taking out some time to focus on something you love. Or if you love face masks, try an invigorating 5-minute face mask to wake you up.

7. Check in with a loved one

Even if your loved one is at work or is otherwise busy too, take five minutes to send a quick email or leave a voicemail to let them know you’re thinking about them and want to catch up later. Or, just see how they’re doing. Making time — even a few minutes — for loved ones will help you to feel better and focus on what matters.

8. Eat a healthy snack

At work, many tend to reach for candy bars or chips. Instead, eat a healthy snack like some fruit, nuts, or yogurt that will leave you feeling full and energized longer. A little protein and fiber will go a long way to help you get more done (and feel better).

About Theresa Felicio'

Theresa Felicio is a New York marketing manager and fitness fanatic

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