Do you ever feel that a lunch break is too much of a luxury to justify? Do you frequently eat a sandwich at your desk instead of taking a break for lunch? Do you forego some of your lunch hours in order to get everything done on time if you’re in a pinch?
In case you responded “Yes” to any of the above questions, you are making some serious errors.
The purpose of your lunch break is to refresh and refocus for the rest of the day. In fact, some of the world’s most productive people credit their success to their habit of taking frequent, high-quality breaks.
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Taking A Break for Lunch Is Essential to Our Efficiency.
Your lunch break, like every other break you take at work, gives you the opportunity to refuel, focus, and get more done when you return.
While most Americans take at least a 30-minute lunch break, a study of UK workers found that 31% take longer than that, and 52% don’t take any lunch break at all.
According to another Hays survey conducted in Australia and New Zealand, more than half of workers prefer to remain in the office during lunchtime. This is a bad idea for more than just the sake of your lunchtime enjoyment. You expose your food to millions of bacteria and microbes when you eat at your desk.
To get ahead, you might think that using your lunch break to catch up on emails and other work is a good idea. Instead, you’re preventing yourself from getting the rest you need, which only perpetuates the cycle of exhaustion.
Workers who don’t take lunch breaks tend to feel greater pressure and get fewer results than those who do.
Since we’ve established that lunchtime is crucial to your productivity, let’s talk about how to spend it in a way that’s both beneficial and enjoyable.
Consider Your Lunch Break as an Integral Component of Your Workday
a time when you can relax and recharge so that you can perform at a higher level when you return to your desk. That’s why it’s important to make the most of your lunch break each day.
Keep in mind that how you choose to spend your break time is none of anyone else’s concern except your own. The ability to schedule one’s own lunch break and determine one’s own activities during that break is highly valued by employees, according to studies.
Here are some suggestions (besides eating) for making the most of your lunch break:
- Listen to some music while you relax in your office or outside. The stress reduction and other mental and physical benefits of the mindfulness technique can only be realized via regular practice.
- You should go out and do some errands. Taking the time for a proper lunch break will allow you to get some work done during the day, leaving you with more free time in the evening. You can do things like pick up a package or have a quick meeting with a coworker.
- Do something relaxing, like listening to an audiobook or podcast. While driving to work or out for a run, you can use this time to educate yourself.
- Exercise. Take a walk around your neighborhood, do some exercises at the office, or, if you have access to a gym, get in a quick workout. If you want to get a good workout in during your lunch break, here is a guide to the more strenuous ones.
- Take some time to read a magazine, journal, or newspaper. Although it may seem antiquated, reading from paper rather than a screen actually reduces the amount of strain placed on the eyes (provided that you have good lighting).
- Communicate with other workers. Employees who have pals at work tend to be happier and more engaged in their work. Get to know your coworkers better, talk about what you’ve learned, and plan some fun events to do together.
Put Good Fuel into Your Brain by Eating Right.
It’s in your best interest to fuel your body with nutrients that boost mental performance. Eating a well-balanced, nutritious meal can help you focus, remember things better, feel less exhausted, and get more done.
Put down the sugary snacks and the quick meals and serve yourself some of these brain foods instead:
- Choline, a fat-like B vitamin found in eggs, improves both memory and reaction time.
- The high levels of vitamin K and folate in avocados reduce the risk of stroke and aid in the development of healthy brain tissue, particularly in the areas of memory and concentration.
- Researchers have shown that eating fish, particularly fatty fish like salmon, herring, and sardines, improves memory and learning.
- Vitamins and magnesium included in whole grains, such as brown rice, have been shown to boost brain power.
- Maintaining a continuous supply of glucose to the brain is essential for healthy cognitive performance, and raw carrots can help you do just that.
- The glucose your brain needs to function properly is found in bananas.
- It has been shown that eating nuts, especially almonds and walnuts, might boost mental energy and general well-being.
In contrast, fatty and greasy foods like burgers and fries will have the opposite effect and leave you feeling drowsy and unmotivated. And as the glucose in your brain lowers, sugary meals like candy and soda can make you feel sluggish, distracted, and even anxious.
Try not to allow your hectic schedule to eat away at your health and contentment. Take frequent, shorter breaks, and treat lunch like a royal occasion.