Working from home? If so, you’d be forgiven for suffering the occasional productivity slump. While remote working comes with many benefits, from flexibility to improved work-life balance, being in your home environment can be distracting and uninspiring.
If you can relate to this, it’s time for you to harness your lunch hour. Many skip their lunch break to counteract any time lost to lapses in motivation, but by doing this, your productivity is likely to suffer more later in the day. Here are a few things you can do at lunchtime to leave you feeling recharged.
Living and working in the same environment every day doesn’t exactly rouse creativity. So, make good use of your lunch break and get out of the house. If you have a green space nearby, enjoy a leisurely stroll among nature. Going for a walk isn’t just great for your physical health but being around trees and greenery has been proven to reduce stress and boost your mood. If you haven’t got a park nearby, no worries, a simple change of scenery should do the trick!
Have a chat with someone you care about
Working from home for long periods can feel isolating at times, particularly if you live alone or are the only one at home during the day. Take a break from your screen at lunch to catch up with a loved one. You’re sure to feel uplifted and in a more positive headspace after connecting with somebody you care about. This could be a phone call, message exchange, or even a walk together if you live nearby.
Eat something nutritious
This probably goes without saying, but your lunch break is there for…well…lunch! You’d be surprised how many people skip a meal in order to tick another item off their to-do list, but it’s important that you eat to fuel your body and your mind. By skipping lunch you’re putting yourself at risk of hitting an afternoon energy slump, which won’t do you any favors workwise. Plus, with your kitchen mere steps away, there’s no excuse not to whip up something healthy and satisfying!
Release some endorphins
Unless you’ve got an important cameras-on meeting after lunch, your lunch break could be the perfect time to break a sweat. A recent study by Currys PC World found that 1 in 5 people admit they’ve been less active since the pandemic began, so it’s important to fit exercise in when you can. It’s crucial for your physical health, and also releases mood boosting hormones called endorphins and is proven to improve concentration and enhance creativity. YouTube has thousands of free workout videos that are easy to follow at home, including HIIT workouts, yoga and even dance, so you’re bound to find something that suits you.
This may not sound particularly exciting but cleaning your home can work wonders for helping you reset for the rest of the day. A tidy environment makes for a tidy mind, after all! Not only will you likely feel more relaxed with less clutter around you, but the act of cleaning can be meditative, too. Simply allow your mind to wander as you get cleaning or pop your favorite album on and get lost in the music.
Do nothing at all
Sometimes, if you’ve had a busy or stressful start to the day, all you want to do is kick back and relax at lunchtime. And that’s more than ok! In fact, it’s encouraged if that’s what you feel will benefit you best. Grab some lunch and take a break to simply chill out. You’re sure to get back to your computer feeling refreshed and more motivated afterwards.
All breaks from work are beneficial, but to really get your productivity juices flowing, why not try some of these ideas on the list? You’re destined to feel the difference!
Sophie Deering is a freelance copywriter with an interest in health and fitness, business and productivity.
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Erin shows overscheduled, overwhelmed women how to do less so that they can achieve more. Traditional productivity books—written by men—barely touch the tangle of cultural pressures that women feel when facing down a to-do list. How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.