Taking Breaks is NOT being Lazy

People seem to have this misconception about laziness in general. I've mentioned before that the word lazy itself is neutral (neither good or bad but depends on context). Taking breaks is not lazy because resting is a necessary activity for recovery for both physical or mental activities.

Our brain needs downtime to remain creative and generate its most innovative ideas. Our brains have two modes. When you are doing creative work, learning something new, or working on your most important tasks, you are in the “focused” mode.

Your brain assumes “diffuse” mode when you are relaxed, taking a walk, or daydreaming. Studies have shown that activity in many regions of the brain increases when your minds wander. Your brain solves its difficult problems while daydreaming.

According to Research, taking regular breaks from mental tasks improves creativity and that skipping breaks can lead to stress, exhaustion, and creative block.

Note - Research References:

When faced with a long creative problem, it is best to impose brief breaks on yourself. Brief mental breaks will actually help you stay focused on your task and improve your idea generation approach. A structured downtime can help you do your best work. We tend to generate redundant ideas when we don’t take regular breaks.

Rest to overcome fatigue:
Our brains are like our smartphones or computers, even though it's performing well it is very possible that you are overheating or the memory gets clogged. And at some point, you may need to clear cache, or restart or even re-charge.

Most of us tend to see rest as something passive, which makes sense if you choose to think of it as the opposite of movement or forward action. Rest, then, seems like a negative, with whatever else we could be doing as the positive. But rest is also an active, albeit different, state.

Sleep, for example, something we often think of as the very opposite of activity, has been identified as “the single most important health behavior.” This is due to the restorative benefits that include mood regulation, improved memory, lower stress and a better ability to focus.

When we rest our bodies from physical exercise, we experience similar restorative effects. Our muscles, having been torn by one activity forced upon them, use periods of rest to actually engage in their own activity of rebuilding and thus grow stronger.

And when we give our mind a rest, from studying or working, we allow our brain time to process and cull information, to sort things appropriately. By allowing ourselves time to rest, we allow our bodies and our brains the time and space required to do all of the work that we cannot see (re-building, sorting of data), but that is so essential for our wellbeing and optimal performance.

Quick breaks you can take:

  • Take a walk - A few minutes stroll can increase blood flow to the brain, which can boost creative thought.
  • Doodling - Let your mind wander as you embrace pen and paper, again. Research shows that doodling can stimulate new ideas and help us stay focused.
  • Exercise - It can give you more energy and help you gain focus. 
  • Meditate - Meditation lowers stress levels and improves overall health as well as creativity. 
  • Sleeping (or a power nap) - A number of studies have established that naps sharpen concentration and improve the performance.

Learn to enjoy and embrace relaxation as an opportunity to fully recharge your own batteries.
For a more Creative Brain, Let's take breaks on purpose! It's absolutely not lazy when we need to do it!
Taking Breaks is NOT being Lazy Taking Breaks is NOT being Lazy Reviewed by Vernon Joseph Go on Wednesday, October 10, 2018 Rating: 5

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