Part of our “G.R.I.T. – Give, Recognize, Implement, Time: The path to empowerment and overcoming negativity!” series.

Have you found yourself working more now than before?

Is work always present?

If you can’t quite seem to peel away or justify taking a break from work, you’re NOT alone!!!

Not only have I experienced an increase in work myself, but I’ve also seen an unequivocally increase in working hours across the board with my clients in every sector.  Recently, an article published in the Harvard Business Review supports this notion, pointing to an average increase of the work day by 10% to 20% for 600+ survey participants (click here for the article).

With the greater increase in our work loads, the easy accessibility to our “offices,” and no commute time, it is hard to take a step back from work when we need to.  It can even feel like we are “cheating” our employers if we do take a break.  We want to show we are working, productive, and doing right by our employers, but how do we ALSO do right by ourselves?  The answer…

Call a timeout!

Yup, blow the whistle!  Give ourselves permission to be a human being who needs to be able to get up, walk away, relax, refocus, recharge, and come back to what we were doing in a more productive state.

When we are in the thick of it, we get zoned in on what we are doing and singularly focused on finishing what we are working on; however, that can often play to our detriment.  Often, we can get frustrated, re-read the same sentence (or re-write) over and over again, keep staring out the window or reading an article instead of actually finishing the task at hand.  It is in these moments that we, as human beings, need a break, and that’s okay!  It’s okay to give ourselves permission to be human and take the break we need!

So, what does calling a timeout actually look like?  How can we justify taking the break we need?

It all starts with mentally accepting we CAN take that break.  When we are in the office, we take these breaks naturally by getting a snack, getting coffee, or chatting with a co-worker; however, there is a difference in our acceptance of doing this while at home.  If we do get a snack or coffee, it is more of a grab and go situation then a break and our co-workers aren’t a short distance down cubicle row from us, they are a phone call away – a big difference!  Walking down the aisle to talk to a co-worker feels natural, whereas picking up the phone to talk to them may feel forced and therefore something we are less inclined to do.  In addition, for those of us with kids or pets, we may feel like there’s added detractors from work that we want to make up for.  Simply put, taking a break at home comes with a greater mental hurdle than taking a break in the office does.

The clear easy way to overcome this hurdle, give ourselves the permission we need to accept what serves us as human beings, and take the break we need is calling a timeout.  When we flip the script and change our perspective slightly, we experience a large tangible impact!  Calling a timeout does just that for us.  A timeout is a break with a pre-defined finite length that is within the confines of what we are doing.  In others words, it is a natural break in a game, or our work day in this case, that is built-in, accepted, and a part of what is used to reset and get back to it in the way we need to.  In sports, teams call timeouts to draw up plays, give players a break, or strategize.  We can do the exact same!

In fact, viewing our breaks as timeouts naturally builds in the above characteristics to our frame of mind.  It inherently gives ourselves permission to take the break AND to be human by taking time to reset and refocus.  What difference do you notice within yourself as you think about taking a break versus calling a timeout?

Changing one single word – break to timeout – can have a significant impact on us!  The next time you face the challenge of taking a break, feeling burnt out or warn down, or can’t focus, call a timeout.  Not only does calling a timeout make us more productive and more focused, it also gives us a greater acceptance of “It’s okay to take the time we need to reset.”  Afterall, we’re all human and operating at our best requires stepping away when we need to in order to come back stronger!

Learn More About G.R.I.T. – Give, Recognize, Implement, Time & Find More Actions You Can Take Right NOW!

To learn more about our signature coaching approach which DOES help people all over the world stay focused, overcome, and achieve, please use the link below.

In some of our prior posts, we’ve included some easy clear-cut actions you can take right now to help overcome the challenges you are facing.  Click on any or all of the links below to dive into easy small wins which lead you to success!

Give –

Recognize –

Implement –

Time –

Want our help right now to call a timeout?!

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“To provide free, short, simple, and actionable content to tackle the real challenges we are facing now.”

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