Looking for a few ways to refresh your mind and emotions while you're at work or involved in a project that requires a great deal of concentration? Taking a break — even just a five minute one — can give us a different perspective and a fresh outlook which can spur our creativity and creative problem-solving abilities. So, the next time you are feeling run down while at work, get away from your desk, your spreadsheets, your iPad, your report writing, or even your violin practicing and do one of the following short, sweet and easy motivators.
First, consider taking a walk! Just getting some fresh air is an inspirer and uplifter. So take a short and slow walk around the block. There's no reason to rush any of these suggestions. In fact, rushing them will only increase your stress levels. This five to ten-minute creativity break is specifically to take your mind off the tasks at hand. So no looking at the clock! You know when five minutes is up; trust your time instincts, relax and enjoy the scenery. And if the scenery is not so good or the weather is dicey, then take a walk around your building, down the hall or somewhere else indoors. And if walking is not an option, then…
Read the comics — or something else that is funny. Laughter is the best medicine, so give yourself this happiness tonic on a regular basis. Whether it's jokes, cartoons, or David Sedaris stories; laughter releases stress-reducing hormones and helps us let off emotional steam. The harder you laugh, the more you cathartic you feel — so laugh, laugh, laugh!
Get inspired! Read an inspiring quote — or several — find one that speaks to you and then consider how to bring the quote's essence into your own life. Here are a few to get you started:
Helen Keller: Although the world is full of suffering, it is full also of the overcoming of it.
Bette Davis: A sure way to lose happiness, I found, is to want it at the expense of everything else.
Auntie Mame: "Oh, Agnes! Here you've been taking my dictations for weeks and you haven't gotten the message of my book: live!"
Get outside of yourself and talk with an uplifting friend. Find out what's going on with someone you know instead of the 24/7 news cycle. This isn't a phone call to commiserate, complain or whine; it's a call to laugh, be uplifted and enjoy life with someone you care about. So when you call — don't launch into how hard work is or how inane the tax code is — call to find out how they are, to share a humorous anecdote or to find out when they want to meet up for a real visit.
And finally, do something else that is creative and that you enjoy! Pull out your knitting, whip out your sketch pad, or prune your office plants. Engaging in something else can bring a new level of creativity to your work and to your artistic pursuits by keeping you enthused and motivated. Even something we truly enjoy can become dull and draining over time, so mix things up, change your routine and give yourself a creative creativity break!