Why is it important to take short breaks while working?

Posted November 4, 2020 by Sachin Neravath ‐ 3 min read

Working yourself to the bone might get you results faster, but you aren't going to be well enough to enjoy the success. Your work will suffer and all that extra time you put in when you weren't looking after yourself will be wasted anyway..

Time Blocking

When you’re passionate about something or you have a busy schedule, it’s very tempting to keep working, even when you feel tired. It’s not good for our bodies and it’s certainly not good for our mind.

Working yourself to the bone might get you results faster, but you aren’t going to be well enough to enjoy the success. Your work will suffer and all that extra time you put in when you weren’t looking after yourself will be wasted anyway. What is Time Blocking?

Time blocking works on the basic principle that you work for a set period of time, ideally 45 minutes, focused solely on one task. After 45 minutes of focused work, you will then take a 15-minute break.

When you try to multi-task or switch between multiple tasks without a break, studies have shown this can make you less productive and increases the number of errors in your work.

Working in short bursts of focused time, followed by a break can keep your mind fresh and boost your productivity. You’d be amazed at how much work you can actually get through in 45 minutes when your body and mind is rested and focused!

Benefits of Time Blocking

  • Decreases physical and mental fatigue: Giving your body and mind some precious rest in between tasks will give you some breathing space and help to keep you healthy
  • Helps fight procrastination: Knowing what you are working on and staying focused on the task in hand will reduce the temptation to procrastinate.
  • Boosted productivity: Limited distractions and more focused work time will supercharge your productivity.
  • Decreases stress: Knowing what you are doing and having an orderly plan in place for your to-do list can decrease stress and improve your mental health.
  • Better time management: It’s all in the planning! Consistently planning and evaluating how you spend your time will lead to better time management and boosted productivity.

Tips for Better Time Blocking

  • Plan out your chunks of time: Make sure you know what task you will be working on next to limit the temptation of procrastination.
  • Set a timer: Instead of clock-watching, set a timer with an alarm to alert you when your sessions start and end.
  • Limit distractions: Put your phone on airplane mode, limit your internet access and most definitely stay away from social media. Work blocks are for work only.
  • Make the most of your breaks: During your breaks try to get away from your screens and move your body. If you can, get outside for some fresh air and away from your work area.

Time blocking is a continuous process, so make sure you are constantly recording and evaluating how you spend your time in order to supercharge your productivity and improve your health and work.