The Importance of Stepping Away From Your Professional Life Now and Then
Mental health and wellness is increasingly important in today’s competitive world. From work-life balance to managing responsibilities, its crucial to keep your head above water.
There is a lot to be said for finding the ideal balance in life. The biggest problem most of us have is that once we’ve hit a certain threshold in our careers, whether it’s starting to run a business or we when make a very comfortable living, we start to feel like we have got to keep going. We try to maintain this level of living, just in case it’s taken away from us. A very good example is the business owner who has spent so long building up their business and now is seeing profits galore, but these are people that can make better use of their money and now should step away from their professional life on a semi-regular basis. Why should we all not just spend time on vacation but actually step away from our professional lives?
The Benefits of Stepping Away From the Rat Race
The reality is, for most of us, that when we are in a highly-paid career, there is a lot of pressure that comes along with it. The more you earn, the more responsibility you have resting on your shoulders, and therefore, you can feel that sense of being overwhelmed all too quickly. Lots of people thrive in a pressurised environment, but we can struggle to switch off at the end of the day – not least after months, if not years, of daily commutes and being on the go. Lots of people love the luxury lifestyle that comes along with it, but we have to remember that the nice things are not a replacement for real downtime away from the pressures of modern life. This is why it’s important to use your money wisely and invest in things that will allow you to rest and recuperate.
Sometimes we can benefit from simplicity; there are companies like Alamo Homes that provide mobile homes in the middle of Texas and the sense of stepping away from everything you know. Getting back to simplicity will help you to feel more reinvigorated and understand what is a priority. Stepping away from the rat race should be done on a regular basis, but we tend to find that we can’t tear ourselves away from our work because we feel we need to keep checking emails in case we miss something. There is that stress that if we let the ball drop, someone is going to take it from us, but this means that we may benefit from reassessing what is important in our lives.
Remembering the Risks of Not Taking Breaks
On a physiological level, our bodies are designed to respond to stress in short bursts. It’s when that stress is prolonged that we begin to see the negative effects of stress over time. When the stress response is triggered repeatedly and regularly, this can turn into chronic stress where real health problems can begin. It’s critical to remember that if we don’t look after our stress levels, we are not looking after our health. It can make us susceptible to high blood pressure, gastrointestinal issues, and other physical manifestations of stress, such as tension in the body. This means that if we are constantly on autopilot or approach things from a place of anxiety, it’s going to take its toll on our physical and mental well-being.
Taking breaks allows us the opportunity to decompress, as it allows us to reset and cope with the overall stresses that life gives us. It’s completely impossible to avoid stress, and this is something many people struggle with. Many people believe that if they avoid stress, they are “keeping the wolf from the door” in terms of negative health, but there are benefits of having stress in your life, namely improved resilience and perspective. However, if you don’t take regular breaks in life and step away from what you do, you won’t experience the benefits of rest and recuperation, and you will not be far more equipped to deal with those stresses if you don’t take a break.
How Can We Step Away From Life Effectively?
There are things you can do to step away in a physical sense, such as a vacation or even a staycation, but there are other things you can do in terms of getting that adequate downtime. If you feel like you are tethered to your email, you need to be stricter in terms of the hours you are available. We should be better at switching off our phones when we step away from our work, but it’s not that simple, which is why having short breaks throughout the day can also make a big difference. Entrepreneurs espouse the benefits of taking breaks and they build it into their schedules.
Having a reminder every hour or so to step away just for five minutes allows you to decompress and reconfigure your brain so you are not just taking that time away, but you can come back to your work feeling reinvigorated. Some people don’t like the idea of taking a break because it means that they lose their edge, but taking a break can help promote clear thinking, which means that you can return to your work feeling far more productive. When it comes to stepping away, you’ve got to prioritize rest rather than feeling like you need to do more in your downtime. It’s a good idea to start practicing something like the Pomodoro method, where you can work for 25 minutes and then take a 5-minute break, with longer breaks taken after four consecutive work intervals.
There is more pressure for us to be connected in this day and age, and this means that we’re giving so much of ourselves to our jobs that we never have that proper feeling of downtime. We should all prioritize stepping away from our professional life, no matter how little we step away from it. When we are feeling like there is so much to do and not enough time to do it in, and that overall professional pressure means that we invariably burn out, this is why taking the bull by the horns and stepping away from your professional life for a very small period of time doesn’t just mean that you can come back to your work feeling more refreshed, but it will benefit your health, well-being, and your sense of self in the long run.