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Copyright 2005

30 Quick Breaks

In our busy lives, it is easy to get distracted and forget to take time for ourselves. There’s always one more phone call or email to make, or ‘not much longer’ to finish something off.

Trying to fit in a half day of fun may seem impossible, but a number of short breaks throughout the day and week will keep you refreshed. And make life more enjoyable, too!

Here are some very quick breaks to shake away the cobwebs:

  • Grab a drink and have it away from your desk. Maybe look out a window or chat to someone as you drink it.

  • Read a chapter in a book – or a section if the chapters are too long!

  • Flick through a magazine or newspaper

  • Walk around the house or office, do it a few times if you can

  • Do a crossword or puzzle

  • Go pull some weeds out of the garden (yep, even if you don’t work from home!)

  • Wash up everyone’s coffee cups – variety for you and favour for the cleaner

  • Ring a friend for a five minute chat

  • Do some stretches – staying at your seat or not, some stretches will waken your body

  • Put on a CD or the radio and just listen to it

  • Doodle or draw on paper at your desk

  • Read some of those joke emails you put aside ‘for later’

  • Jot down a wish list for your next birthday, Christmas, anniversary, etc. It will take your mind elsewhere and make it easier when someone says “what do you want?”

  • Sit and imagine yourself somewhere else for a few minutes- a beach, by a river, in the bush, anywhere you find pleasant.

  • Just sit and consciously take some deep breaths

  • Write a letter (why not use pen and paper!) to a friend or family

  • Look through some photos and think about when they were taken

  • Stand at a window and admire the view or just watch the people passing by

  • Rearrange your office or desk – its still work related but will be give you a fresh start. And it will make you move around!

  • Count how many times you can touch your toes – preferably whilst standing up

  • Go outside. Even if you walk out the door and straight back in, you’ll get some fresh air.

  • Work on your hobby. Knitting or cross stitching can be done for five minutes at your desk; scrap bookers could cut out shapes for later; collectors could source new items; search the internet for information or suppliers for many other hobbies.

  • Light a candle or oil burner and watch the flames (only if its safe, of course)

  • Play a quick game of solitaire on your desk. Even better, have a game of snap with a friend.

  • Sit and think about where you’d like to go for a holiday – forget practicalities and just daydream for a while

  • Write a list of 5 things that are good about today and 5 that are good about the work you do.

  • Chat on a community forum – but watch the clock so it doesn’t take too long

  • Massage your feet, hands or shoulders – or get someone else to do it if you can.

  • Splash water on your face and wrists as an easy pick-me-up.
  • Give yourself a good shake – shake your feet, legs, arms, hands and head as you sit at your desk, or get up and just shake your whole body. It might feel silly, but it’s amazing how good you’ll feel afterwards.

Tash Hughes is a Mum of four in Melbourne. She is also a writer and owner of Word Constructions. Tash can help you write any busienss documents - blog posts, articles, webcopy and letters included. You can see her site and services at www.wordconstructions.com.au





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