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Hold Please: Fall in Love with Taking Breaks

How hitting pause can give your whole life an instant upgrade.

Hustle culture would have us believe that to get things done, we just need to power through. But if you ask science, the road to success and happiness is paved with breaks—lots of them. Dozens of studies are stacking up with an unequivocal fact: Regular breaks anywhere from five minutes to an hour boost productivity and work quality. Not that work is the only important reason to pause. Breaks lead to a life that feels spacious and rich with time for those who matter most, including and especially yourself. Read on for our favorite tips for just taking a moment.

Nature: Your Break’s Best Buddy 
Step outside and smell the fresh air, feel the sun and the rain. Several studies suggest you’ll offload more stress and net more focus and creativity out of an outdoor break. If you can’t step outside, look out a window or simply appreciate the beauty of an indoor plant.

Human enjoying nature by the water

Make Breaks Non-Negotiable 

Breaks are too important to miss—add them to the cal or set a reminder on your phone. If you’re having trouble fitting in breaks, try habit stacking, which is attaching a new behavior to something you do anyway. Heading for a bathroom break? Tack on a short walk to see a pal or walk the long way past a piece of art you love. 

Learn more: Read Atomic Habits by James Clear and become a habit-stacking expert.  

 

Step Away From the Scroll  
Not all breaks are created equal. One influential study showed that Interacting with your phone on your break prevents your brain from recharging effectively and can even lead to more stress. Unless you’re using your phone to listen to a meditation—see below—maybe just leave it plugged in so that it can have a chance to recharge, too.  

Learn more: Deep Work by Cal Newport details the science around deep focus. Spoiler alert: Respecting downtime is a key finding.

Human meditating

Meditate 

Sometimes closing your eyes for a few minutes of calm and quiet is just the right way to recharge. Don’t have a peaceful place to take a break? Search “guided meditations” and plug in those headphones.  

To try: The Insight Timer app lets you track and time your meditations and offers thousands of guided options. 

Human taking a break with a latte

Treat Yourself  

Breaks are exactly the right time to do something nice for yourself. That’s why we made our new Organic Chai Lattes. It’s the perfect take-a-moment treat. Just add your favorite milk, heat it anywhere—even a microwave—or have it iced So, relax, enjoy your break, and bring a healthier, happier you back toyour day.  

Take a moment your way: Organic Chai Lattes, just the way you like them in ClassicCaffeine Free, and Light.  

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