Tying yourself to your desk, to work overtime, or agreeing to take special projects without taking a break is a sure recipe for disaster. Over-stress at work results in performance issues such as lack of optimal output, low quality work, use of harsh language, reduced productivity, lack of morale, engagement, and motivation.
Likewise, warning signs also include frequent disappearances, sporadic attendance, and even depression. All these attributes negatively affect the work environment and performance of the team. Overworked employees experience job burnout. This aspect adversely affects employee health and wellbeing as well as affects the health of the organization.
Benefits of taking regular breaks
There are scientific reasons to take a break at work. Scheduled downtime at work recharges your batteries, keeps you from getting bored, and helps to re-evaluate our goals.
Working for long periods causes exhaustion and poor work performance. Taking breaks makes you more creative, replenishes your thoughts, and refreshes your mind. Researchers say that “Aha” moments often come to those who regularly take breaks. As a team, when you take scheduled breaks, it boosts team morale, creativity, and productivity.
Overstressed employees start using harsh language and bully other team members, which results in discord and creates a negative environment. Taking regular breaks boosts their physical and emotional health. Sitting for long periods puts you at a higher risk of depression, diabetes, heart disease, and obesity. Enjoying a quick walk, doing some simple stretches, or having some healthy snacks can boost your brainpower and positive feelings.
Prevents decision fatigue
In a competitive office environment, you squeeze your brain to make several decisions. Over time this action can weaken your willpower and reasoning ability. You can be mentally tired without physical tiredness. Taking a break gives you clarity of thoughts. Research studies point out that people made better decisions after a break. Schedule important meetings or decisions early in the day or right after the lunch break when you’ve taken proper rest.
More time for healthy habits
Regular breaks prompt you to practice healthy habits. Drinking water hydrates your body, eating healthy foods nourishes your body with essential nutrients – so you become more productive. Likewise, doing yoga or stretches boosts blood circulation and increases your energy levels. Break times encourage your involvement in self-care activity, which ultimately promotes your performance.
How to encourage employees to take breaks at the office
Research shows that taking breaks from work is essential for recovery. Adequate recovery is critical for top performance. Just as athletes need rest to up their game, so do employees need rest to perform their best work. Here are a few tips to encourage employees to take a break at the office.
Many people think taking a break is a taboo, and it will show them as being lazy or irresponsible. Break these notions among your employees by putting up flyers, sending out emails, or have your managers discuss the health and wellness benefits of taking regular breaks.
Create break rooms
Provide break rooms for employees to retreat whenever they want some me-time. Make the interiors of break rooms more cozy by providing comfortable furniture along with tables and chairs. Providing such infrastructure will make employees more inclined to take breaks.
Take breaks yourself
Be an example to your employees, so they follow suit. When your employees see you taking regular breaks and the results of it-positivity, good health, and increased efficiency, they’ll be motivated to take breaks and work efficiently.
Top healthy break ideas
A healthy break will give the goal-oriented pre-frontal cortex area of your brain some rest and will shift the focus to relaxation. Doing so will renew focus. The following list of healthy break ideas will refresh and recharge your mind and body.
A brisk walk boosts creativity and enhances performance. Stanford researchers found a link between walking and creativity. They noticed a walking break generated more creative ideas than a sitting break. Creating team walking clubs encourages physical activity and friendship among team members. Ask your employees to form walking clubs and go for short walks each day.
Encourage your employees to be on the move. Allow them about 30 minutes to work out in the on-site gym. If you don’t have one, then rope in a weekly yoga instructor or give your employees gym memberships. Encouraging fitness in the workplace increases job satisfaction, reduces absenteeism, lowers health care costs, boosts brainpower, and motivates employees.
Some employees may be introverts and like to spend their time alone. Provide them a sanctuary where they can retreat and do some meditation, take rest, listen to music, read or catch up with their friends.
Stock the break rooms with healthy snacks, including fruits, yogurt, protein bars, dark chocolates, crackers, nuts, veggies, and hummus. Encourage your team members to snack together.
Socializing helps employees with the skills needed to participate in corporate culture. Likewise, it motivates them and shapes the way they view work habits and teamwork. Quality work relationships reduce stress and improve the wellbeing of employees. A considerate employer provides game rooms to his workforce so that employees can have some fun time together.
Organizing weekly fun activities or corporate sports events reduces stress and helps in promoting a healthy lifestyle. Not only it allows employees to perform but also helps them to interact with top leaders and enhance team bonding across the organization. Team spirit is essential for the successful completion of projects. Sports offer a healthy break from the daily grind and improves interpersonal relationships and generates accomplishment and feelings of success.