Greetings from the beautiful Pocono Mountains in Pennsylvania!

Yes, friends, I decided to take a little bit of a breather from the hustle and bustle of New York, and so this blog is coming to you from the serene calm of a two-day vacation. I’m relaxing, playing a bit of golf – a sport I never truly enjoyed until now – and taking time to reflect, create and renew.   I also happened to discover an amazing micro-brewery here, but that’s another story!

Even though I’m on vacation, I did not skip this week’s “Monday Morning Mini-Motivation Meetings” tele-seminar, because I’m finding them to be so exciting and fun.  Here are some notes my associate, Meg, and I would like to share on the theme of the week. 

Takings breaks from time to time is an important component to being at your best.  All too often, we find ourselves driven by a mindset that sounds like - “What about my ambitious goals and big projects?  Shouldn’t I just push through and just get stuff done?”

I applaud the diligence and commitment you put into your work.  However, even the most focused small business owner, entrepreneur or professional can reach a point of stress that eventually leads to a breakdown or erosion in productivity.

Taking breaks is critical to growth and balance.  Think of it in terms of weight-training: the brain is a muscle. We exercise it regularly, stretch it, and push it, but the muscle building and growth actually happens during the rest between workouts.

Breaks can be taken at different levels. There’s the:

Micro-break – that short period of time like a full, uninterrupted lunch hour or an extended bike ride – that helps to give a boost of energy to kick-start your afternoon as well as a chance for new ideas to emerge.

Meso-break – not unlike my little 2-day retreat into the country, a meso-break may be a stress-free weekend where all electronics are turned off – which helps to give you a bit more of a recharge in your batteries.

Then there’s the Macro-break – that long-awaited two week-long uninterrupted vacation – with good planning and delegating, these are the ones that leave you with lifelong memories and life-enriching experiences. 

Numerous studies confirm that taking breaks can lead to an increase in concentration, focus, creativity, innovation, and overall energy that has you performing at peak condition. Just the very idea of the break – the knowledge that it’s approaching – motivates you to focus better and work productively in order to fully enjoy that break. And then once you’ve returned from the break, (after catching up on some e-mail) you can find yourself fully rejuvenated, jumping headfirst into your best projects with newfound enthusiasm.

Take a moment to think about it. What priorities are you focused on?  How can you rearrange your priorities so a good break – whichever size you deem necessary – can increase your TRUE productivity so that the most important priorities yield you the most meaningful results?

When is your next break? Is the idea of its approach boosting your energy and focus?

Feel free to let me know if you experience a shift in energy. I love hearing about productivity! And if you find yourself overwhelmed by work without a break in sight, give me a call. Together we can carve out a plan to reduce your stress and give you that much-needed battery recharge while still getting things done.

Thinking of you on the 9th hole!

“Taking a break is also a way of boosting confidence… it’s a way of saying to yourself and others, “I fully trust and believe everything will keep working out, even without my attention.”

Author's Bio: 

Jonathan Flaks, M.C.C., Business Success Coach - Since 1998, Jonathan has been helping entrepreneurs, business owners and professionals focus on and reach ambitious goals, maintain continuous confidence and motivation, and achieve balanced success. Jonathan maintains a Master Certified Coach distinction from the International Coach Federation. He earned a dual degree from Cornell University and was Adjunct Professor in Business Leadership and Coaching Skills for New York University. Clients have come from BMG Entertainment, Morgan-Stanley-Smith-Barney, KPMG, Disney, Deloitte, Honeywell, Goldman Sachs, and many entrepreneurial and professional service firms. If you want to start every week with a positive, confident attitude, visit Monday Morning Mini-Motivation Meetings.