Working hard is important if you want to reach your goals, but if you want to reach your goals and remain sane then you have to take a break every once in a while.
Being only human, I sometimes also need to take a break. Tuesday was one of those times, I took a day off. A night off to be specific.
The problem with working so hard towards your goals is that it can result in putting a lot of pressure on yourself. Especially if you are working on multiple goals.
I’ve had too many goals and tried to be perfect at all of them. The thing is perfection is not something that can ever be achieved.
To be the Best Version of Yourself, You Need to Take Breaks
I typically aim to be the best version of myself, but I set some pretty lofty goals for myself this year. A reality check has me behind on them. So I began to scramble.
I did a scattershot of side hustles. Each with the ability to bring in money, but in attempting to do so many I was only bringing in a little bit with each. My nerves require I do more of less. To reset, to work smarter not harder, and to take a break.
I took a night off and then reevaluated my approach to my goals.
An Ideal Break
Your ideal break may be different from mine but the result should be the same. By the end of the break, you should feel relaxed and energized to start tackling the world again.
A great way to give yourself a break is to do a bit of a digital detox, take a break from your smartphone and computer.
My Ideal Break
It was Tuesday night, and it was glorious. I hit up a “happy hour” for a couple of beers and some pizza; followed by a movie (which was way cheaper than I expected, weekday night rates?) and some ice cream. I then just took a drive, I ended up taking a road with one of my favorite views of the city.
Arriving home relaxed, I did not open my computer or even check my phone. I read for a bit and went to bed. I woke up Wednesday feeling much more motivated, but not fully recovered.
Another quiet relaxing night with a break from my computer and my phone has lead to an even more productive Thursday.
It’s Ok to Take Multiple or Regular Breaks
You’ll notice that my break streched over two nights. Sometimes you just need to stop and not do anything after work for a few days.
I know it can be tough, especially when you are side hustling to reach your goals. But did you know that researchers found that productivity tends to drop off around 50 hours of work a week? So if you are working 60 or 80 hours a week, you’re not actually getting any more done than you would working 50 hours a week. Take. A. Break.
How Taking a Break Helps You
A break can be an invaluable tool in being more productive in the long term. If you don’t take breaks you will eventually burn out, and it will take you a lot longer to get back on track. Instead of attempting to go from zero to a hundred, take the time to take action on things you’ve wanted to get done and that you can build on.
I’m glad I stopped myself before getting to a point where I felt completely burned out. I’ve decided to create achievable monthly goals, that in reality may not add up to my overall goals for the year. But I think if I can continually improve, I’ll end up having a much more successful year.
What Happens When You Don’t Take a Break
Going full speed ahead with no breaks is a one-way ticket to burnout city. It is SO much harder to recover from being burned out than it is to just stop and take a break. The longer you put off taking a break, the longer a break you will need.
Wrapping it Up with a Bow on Top
When you start to feel overwhelmed, take stock of what is causing your stress. Take a break and remember to recognize the signs for next time. The better you are at recognizing your stress triggers, the more easily you can avoid them and recognize when you need to take a break.
What do you do when you need a break?