I have gotten in a nasty habit of eating lunch at my desk. I spend the time eating, reading blogs, or catching up on email. What I have found is that when I eat in front of the computer, I eat more, and I am hungry about an hour later. It got me thinking about my lunch break: my employer insists we take a full hour for lunch. And when I actually leave my desk for an hour, the day seems shorter, and my afternoons are more productive. If you routinely eat at your desk, here are 5 reasons you should take your lunch break:
5 Reasons Why You Should Take Lunch
Give Yourself Physical Space
If you spend all day doing the same type of task, like typing, getting away from the computer will allow you to use muscles other than your fingers. Stretching and walking will ease sore muscles and energize you.
When I eat while focused on something else, I will always overeat because I am not conscious of how much I am eating. Getting away from my desk and focusing on the taste and smells of lunch allow me to experience the food and feel full (not overstuffed) at the end.
Just because you are not at your desk doesn’t mean that your brain will quit working. Getting physically away from a problem can give your brain unconscious space to think about it. I have discovered many programming solutions while out walking the dog, taking a shower or gardening. I also find that after coming back from a lunch break code that was snarling when I left seems to resolve itself.
Lower Stress Levels
Getting away from your desk can pull you mentally away from stressful situations. When I worked with a local public safety department, I learned that the 911 dispatchers are required to take several breaks per day in which they are required to leave the dispatch room. This physical separation allows them to mentally separate from the stress that is in the room.
You Deserve A Break
Working parents work hard. Our lunch hours are sometimes the only time we get a chance to relax and talk to adults, or do something for ourselves. You work hard, and you deserve a break. Take it!
This post was originally posted at LauraEarnest.com and has been migrated here in preparation for when I shut the LauraEarnest blog down.
Photo by goatopolis