The one-minute break secret

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So last time I promised to give you some ideas of how to prevent burnout and make sure your teams perform without crashing and burning.  This is just the beginning of a journey that is going to have us explore many avenues of this new world of better quality working.

We live in a world where we are over-stimulated all the time, over-adapting.  The workplace is often where it happens in its heightened form: phones ringing, colleagues interrupting, to-do lists bursting to the seams, instant messaging taking over from the file we are trying to read or write, last-minute emergencies disrupting a carefully-balanced agenda… there is too much requiring our attention at the same time, too much pressure, too much of everything.  Overwhelm is just round the corner.

Here is the secret to how to keep a fresh mind even when work and life, in general, are too full of everything: take a break, make a pause, have time off, silent times. Call it anything you want but do it.  There are many ways to do this so let’s start with a basic: the one-minute break.  As unlikely as it may sound, it can recharge you for the rest of the day.

So, what does an efficient break at work look and feel like?   Several times a day, take a one-minute break.  You can even make it just a few seconds to start with if one minute sounds way too long to you.  You do not need any particular place or an environment, just wherever you are, close your eyes, breathe out deeply, let your shoulders down, unclench your jaw, forget everything and listen only to your breathing. Ok, it might not be ideal to do in a meeting but otherwise, you can do it pretty much anywhere. If you want to make it two or five minutes, excellent but keep in mind that it is more efficient to have several very short breaks during the day rather than one longer one.  Studies show that we should do this, at least, every two hours.  And please do it even if you are feeling absolutely fine, taking a break BEFORE you are tired is a big part of the secret to keep your mojo going.

If you think you will not even remember to do it, a few ideas may help: setting an alarm on your phone (not a dreadful shrill, something a bit more zen-like would get you going nicely, there are plenty of fun apps out there), putting a sticky note with a fun doodle on them on the side of your screen or simply using times when you finish something and are about to start on another task.

So what are you waiting for?  You have just finished reading, the perfect time to take a break now!

 

Our [email protected] Summit 2016 on the 12th May, in London, will be looking at the link between wellbeing, happiness and productivity, for more information click here.

 

 

About Florence Parot

Enlightened Strategies for Peak Performance

Florence is an international expert in Stress and Sleep management, a Performance Coach and Sophrology* Practitioner.

She works with executives who need to perform at a high level and face pressures and challenges on an everyday basis. She teaches them practical tools and strategies to be at their best when they need it most, know how to “switch off” and “on” at will, remain in control, have energy, focus, a clear head and build resilience. With methods similar to those used by Olympians, she helps her clients develop the brain power of a corporate athlete: their mind at its best!

Florence worked in high-performance environments within Strategy Consulting and International Logistics before training as a Sophrology Practitioner and a Coach. She has been running her own business for 8 years. In 2010, Florence opened the first Sophrology training centre in the UK, The Sophrology Academy, recognised in 2013 as a centre of excellence by the profession.

Florence is a member of the Editorial Committee of the French magazine “Sophrologie, Pratiques et Perspectives” and blogs regularly for the Huffington Post and Psychologies Magazine’s Life Labs. She published her first book: Instant Serenity for Life and Work: An Introduction to Sophrology in 2012 and wrote as the burnout expert for Guide de Sophrologie Appliquée, a book directed at Sophrology professionals in France in 2014.

* Sophrology is a very modern and flexible form of mindfulness used in companies, schools and hospitals on the continent for 50+ years to achieve an alert mind in a relaxed body.

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