Mindful Breaks - Enhancing Employee Well-being in the Office

Mindful Breaks - Enhancing Employee Well-being in the Office

Mindful breaks at work not only help your employees slow down, relax a bit, and feel better, but can also improve their productivity and motivation. Those breaks can be divided into several types, for instance, 25/5 (work/break), 50/10, 80/6, and may include numerous activities, such as a quick snack, a neck massage, pouring a cup of coffee, mindful breathing, or simply going for a walk. We’ll discuss these here, so read on!

Why Do Your Employees Need Mindful Breaks at Work?

Mindful breaks are a way to recharge and get rid of stress. Just a few minutes every now and then can do wonders for your employees. Plus, it also has a positive impact on productivity, which is bound to rise if you let your team members take those short pauses.

Improving Wellbeing through Mindful Breaks at Work

One of the benefits of mindfulness, and thus mindful breaks, is that it affects your employees’ well-being positively. How?

  • Stress relief – Mindful breaks help get rid of stress by focusing on here and now.
  • Reducing pressure – A moment to stop and think about something completely different is great for reducing the feeling of pressure.
  • Mental recharge – White-collar work can be mentally exhausting, and a mindful break at work helps your employees rest a bit and recharge their batteries.

Boosting Productivity with Mindful Breaks at Work

When it comes to productivity, mindful breaks at work help by:

  • Increasing motivation – Nobody wants to stop mid-task, so knowing that they’re about to take a break might motivate your employees to work harder.
  • Enhancing focus – If your employees are too tired, they are bound to be less focused. A mindful break at work helps with the former, thus preventing the latter from happening.
  • Stimulating creativity – A short break might affect the creativity of your employee. Since they disconnect from their tasks and return to them, they might adopt a completely new perspective and come up with more ideas.

How Often Should Your Employees Take Mindful Breaks at Work?

There’s no universally superior approach to break time. Instead, there are many different ways and frequencies adopted in various companies and by various individuals. Thus, let’s see at the possible options:

  • 25-minute work blocks followed by 5-minute breaks
  • 50-minute work blocks followed by 10-minute breaks
  • 80-minute work blocks followed by 6-minute breaks
  • 90-minute bursts followed by 8-10-minute breaks

The right approach depends on the characteristics of the task done by a particular employee. For instance, if the nature of the tasks prevents your team members from taking regular breaks, the 90/8-10 approach will do the trick. But, when your teams deliver short but precise tasks, the 25/5 method will be much better as it will maximize focus. Thus, you need to tailor your strategy.

What Should Mindful Breaks at Work Look Like?

Knowing how to manage time in regard to mindful breaks, let’s discuss how to use them to improve mindfulness at work. There are actually plenty of options, so let’s take a brief look at the possibilities.

Quick Snack

A quick snack, irrelevant as it may seem, is actually a great idea for a short, mindful break at work. If your employees combine it with mindful eating, it can help a lot in terms of stress relief and recharging. Plus, a snack will keep your team members energized!

Mindful Breathing

In this case, your employees should find a free, quiet space. There, they should inhale and exhale slowly a few times, focusing on how the air flows through their body.

Grabbing a Coffee

Getting to the kitchen and grabbing a cup of coffee is an excellent idea for a mindful break as well. Not only does it help slow down a bit, but also recharges the social batteries, as your employees may chat a bit with their colleagues while waiting for their coffee.

Short Stretch

A short stretch will also do the job, especially if your employees spend a lot of time in front of their screens.

A Walk

Another good idea is to let your employees go for a walk. It’s perfect if they can do it outside, for instance, in the green spaces around your office.

Quick Neck Massage

You might also encourage your employees to have a neck massage. It’s easy to do it yourself, doesn’t take much time, and helps a lot, so it’s definitely an option worth exploring.

Solving a Puzzle

There are many puzzles available, so why don’t you get some for your office? They will help your employees take their minds off the work and forget about their worries for a few minutes.

Body Scan

Don’t worry, we don’t mean an X-ray! Encourage your employees to do body scans to see whether any part of their body is tense. They can follow up with a short massage to relieve the pressure. This will help them feel less stressed out.

The Takeaway

Mindful breaks are a must at work. Thanks to them, your employees will feel better, and your company will achieve better results. Therefore, you need to plan the tasks with such breaks included and support your teams by providing them with the break ideas from our list!

You may also read: Mindful Workspaces - Designing Offices for Mental Well-Being

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