Friday, October 19, 2012

Taking breaks ... it works for me!

Welcome to Day 19 of the 31 Days Series It Works for Me!

Again, I am reminded that this series is a refresher course for yours truly.  

Again, I am reminded that perhaps the title of the series might more appropriately be 
"Do As I Say ... Not As I Do!"

That's right.  Take a lesson from the JustB cats ... take a break.

I'm pretty sure that if LtDan ever reads the title of this post, he will laugh himself into the next century and I will be way behind on celebrating significant birthdays with him.
He's been telling me taking breaks is the better way for years.

We are off to Arkansas today.  To see LtDan's folks.  To take a little break.  
I've written about visiting their home before ... just thinking about it stills my soul.

My work style is like the Energizer Bunny.  I keep going.  And going.  And going.  
Until my batteries and me are completely depleted.  

But ever so, ever so slowly ... I'm realizing the value of taking a break.  

 If you're familiar with the Pomodoro technique, developed by Frances Cirillo, 
it's all about the power of taking a break.  
Use a timer, work for 25 minutes, then set it again for a 5 minute break.  
Taking breaks will help you focus more clearly.
Help you be more decisive.
Help you develop a sustainable pace.

Everybody knows taking breaks is best.  Even I know it from personal experience.  

So why don't I DO it?

Why We Stink At Taking Breaks

--by Karen Horneffer-Ginter, Original Story, Oct 06, 2012  

If I were to make up banners and flyers in support of the break movement, they'd have to speak to our tendencies to exhaust ourselves. They'd have to describe how easy it is to get lost in what we're doing and to continue on past a point that's really in our best interests, or even in the best interests of the project we're working on. Our doing, in and of itself, can create a desire for more doing, just as eating sugar creates a longing for more sugar, and getting irritated can cause us to escalate into more irritation. From this perspective, it's important that we practice taking breaks just to keep the habit fresh, so that we don't forget how to. Such practice offers a type of assurance that we'll have this skill set intact for when an opportunity arises to read a bedtime story to our child, or to notice the first blossoms of spring.  
(see the entire article here)

Ah ha ... there it is ... the significant why ... a glimpse of the person I want to be.

... not so busy that I don't stop to look at my sweetheart when he speaks to me ...

... not so busy that I don't pause to really laugh with my youngest when I demonstrate that 
sometimes the student understands the concepts better than the teacher.  
(Checking math by casting out 9's ... who knew??) ...

... not so busy that I don't slow down to watch a Youtube video with my daughter of 
a baby penguin laughing because it's being tickled ...

... not so busy that I don't wait a second before knocking on my son's door 
to listen to him play the guitar ...

... not so busy that I'm not inspired by the passion with which my son talks about 
his favorite video games ...

Not so busy that I don't stop ...
and count the blessings ...
and seize the joys.

Not so busy that I miss out on the sweetness and joy of this life.  

This is a reminder for me:  take a break ... it works!

Shared joy is doubled joy ... let's double the joy for both of us - what are you most grateful for today? Click below to leave your comment. I'll go first :

  1. after a long week of work, a million meetings, 2 million emails answered, countless hours of problem solving; I step into my weekend bubble of happiness where only naps, a favorite movie with my youngest and country living reside. :) I think we get better at learning to take breaks as we get older. Time is so precious