November 18, 2021 at 10:54 am

Advising Tip: Remember to Have Fun!

Morning on the bike path.

Morning on the bike path. Photo by Ben Siegel

From Ohio University News

Editor’s Note: This series is prepared by success advisors in the College of Arts & Sciences.

By Chris Hitchcock
College of Arts & Sciences Success Advisor

While we do need to study and work diligently to be successful, we also need time to unwind and clear our minds.

Although taking time away from our work does mean that we have less time to complete the work, the break often makes us more efficient and effective, thus we complete our work faster and better.

Panning out from our tasks can reduce the tunnel vision and strain it causes and help us see how those tasks are just part of the big picture of our lives, thus helping us relax our minds and think more freely and broadly. Often when we are able to relax like this, we are able to then see new solutions to problems and regain the energy needed to work efficiently and effectively.

Many of us have likely experienced an epiphany that helped solve a problem while out on a walk: that was not a fluke, that break really did help, and breaks like that will continue to help. We also just need the pure break from work—we need to get away and enjoy our time without thinking about work at all. Below are some suggestions for how to unwind and enjoy some free time.

Take Effective Breaks

  • Schedule a couple 15-minute breaks in your daily calendar and stick to them as though they are appointments.
  • Take a walk or do some similar activity during breaks so you get away from your workspace. This allows your mind to focus away from work also. This also provides some exercise and increases circulation, helping to keep you heal and study—get up and move; go outside, look far away, breathe, and listen to different sounds.
  • If most of your work is done on a computer, consider avoiding computers and electronic devices during all or some of your breaks.
  • If you cannot leave your workspace, try cleaning up or rearranging an area. That different type of activity can take your mind off work, then, when you are done, you also have a nicer workspace.

Plan Some Recreational Activities

We do need to ensure that we are completing our work, but we also need to enjoy activities outside of work. Take some time to relax and reset—you will be happier and healthier, and your work and study performance will improve.

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