So a lot of us are at home and adjusting while there is also much uncertainty in what the future holds. There’s a small idea that I want to offer as we get through these changes right now and in your career.
For everyone working from home, you may notice that it is a lot more tiring than before. One major reason is that when you do sit to work, there are fewer distractions than before. It turns out that most people are surrounded by lots of easy distractions when at an office. Even distractions like letting your eyes wander to other fixtures and people in the office. When you are home, these are diminished, leaving you with more focus on your work.
When you have that extra intensity, it is easy to forget how quickly you can deplete your mental and physical stamina. You may find you start to feel sore from sitting longer than you’re used to, or that by the end of the day you feel like a zombie. These are pretty good indicators you’re working too long without taking a break.
My recommendation is to take a break every 45 minutes or so. Take a walk, fold some laundry, do something else for around 15 minutes or so. It’ll do wonders for you.
Another critical time to take a break is in between jobs. It is tempting to roll right into the next position from the other, but I find that I suffer from a bit of mental whiplash when I do this. I’m with a new group trying to learn about them, but my mind wants to associate it back to the group I’ve just left. If the job was particularly hard or stressful, you might bring those feelings with you as well.
I try to take a week off or more between jobs. I want to let the memories and feelings of my previous job settle before taking on something new. I also like going into a new job full of energy from getting to relax a little. When I take even one week in between, I wind up even more excited to start the new job.
In this current situation where so many people are working from home and in future situations where you may be making a career move, pay attention to how taking a break can actually help you accomplish more and start that next job even more refreshed.