Taking A Break Is Healthy
I’ve been asked by a few people about why I haven’t been at user group meetings, and as available for drinks and happy hours. I wrote up this piece about taking a break, and I hope it helps others as much as it has helped me. I read it weekly, to myself. I wrote it, during the fall of 2014.
If you feel overwhelmed, or are having trouble balancing things in your life. It’s rarely a good idea to double down and get entrenched in getting through it all. Consider taking a break. Maybe you’ve considered it. But I had not.
I was at a bar, after a users group meeting. I was not having a great time balancing and managing my life. I was very close to rage quiting my life, or continuing to not do a good job and have my family ragequit me. Then across the bar I saw someone I hadn’t seen in a good little while. So I walk over and start catching up with him, and low and behold he was 2 steps past the cliff I was looking at in my life. We talked for a solid 2 hours. I felt better. But I walked away with 1 thing. Advice from him about taking a break. Which was echoed by the leader of the local users group. I think his exact words were, “if you want that part of your life to work then why are you here?”. He was right. Why was I there.
It wasn’t that the advice was revolutionary. It was that he said it and I didn’t tell it to myself.
YOU DON’T NEED PERMISSION.
I know it feels better if you get it, but you don’t need it. I didn’t need permission, I should have just done it. But I didn’t know how.
So I took a break. The break is not over. The break created a whole new set of things for me to look at and do.
A Few Ways You Can Take a Break
This advice is really good and hard to just hear, take a break. You should. But without some suggestions of what that means, it can be paralyzing. A break doesn’t mean separate from your significant other, quit your job, or leave the city you are in. There are small things you can do to take a break.
- If it has an inbox, mark them all as read
- Start leaving work on time, or even a little early
- Stop doing extra work
- Start taking a lunch break
- Try having lunches with someone every day or as often as you can.
- Stop going out after work.
- Sleep More.
- Play a game (golf, board game, something that you can focus on)
- Get Some exercise in the time you are leaving work on time.
- Utilize all the benefits at your company and take a vacation even if it’s to be in your basement.
If you still feel you need permission
You can take a break. You really can. It’s ok. If you email me firstname.lastname@example.org I will give you permission personally.