Efficiency 101: The Break

Let me tell you a truth that you’re going to find hideously depressing:

Nothing is ever truly done.

There will always been things on your To Do list.  Always chores that must be done over again.  Always laundry.  Always appointments and errands.  There is always something to be done. 

Doesn’t that just make you want to weep?

Here’s another truth:

If you don’t get every single, blessed thing done, it’s okay.

This is something I have to frequently remind myself of because I’m really bad about getting overwhelmed and overtired and falling into this pattern of frenetically trying to finish things until I’m so exhausted, I’m tripping over myself and wind up making more work for myself and usually breaking something.  That’s the point at which my husband steps in and says STOP (because I often won’t until things are DONE).

Sometimes you just have to stop and take a break.  Ten minutes.  Half an hour.  The afternoon.  A whole day.  A WEEKEND.

You have to be the judge of how long you need (aka how long you can go looking at the list of To Be Done not getting done before you start getting an eye twitch).  But TAKE THE BREAK.

Better yet, take the break and FORGET ABOUT WHAT NEEDS DOING for a while.  This is often easier said than done, but is something good to attempt either way.  Go see a movie.  Have dinner out with friends.  Throw a party.  Do something fun!

You’ll come back feeling more rested, more focused, and yes, you guessed it, more efficient.

10 thoughts on “Efficiency 101: The Break

  1. Kait, thanks for this post. I tend to fall into the pattern of which you speak. I run around in circles, frantic because I’m not getting finished. In truth, I get nothing done. Most of the time, I make more work for myself. Time off is key. I call it untangling my mind.

  2. Rest, what’s that? This is the hardest part of being efficient because we’re always planning what we’ll do next.

    My wife actually feels guilty sometimes if she’s just doing something fun like reading because she’s thinking about things she HAS to do.

  3. I think you wrote this post for me. lol. This weekend was supposed to be my catch up writing weekend to write and blog ahead of schedule. That didn’t happen when I fractured my nose and gave myself a black eye. Curious, I blogged about it. But that’s as much writing as I finished this weekend. Kinda needed to ice and rest instead, but I still felt guilty. Thanks for helping put things in perspective.

  4. NO!!!!! Say it ain’t so?!!!!

    Reminds me of a story Bruce Lee used to tell. He was all wound up one day, people coming at him form all sides and the film work-n-stuff, and he was angrily telling himself that he MUST relax! When he figured it out, he had a good laugh at himself, and relaxed.

  5. I am the same way. I have this perpetual list in my head of things that need to be done, or things I should be doing, but all it does is stress me out and the list is never ending. Just recently I’ve told myself it’s ok not not get everything done. That taking me time is okay. Putting this into practice is hard because I’m wired to not procrastinate. But, I find that when I do relax and say i’ll do that another day then I’m much happier.

  6. So very true. I make a list – what’s on the list gets done and no more. After that I try to play or write or go on twitter (that’s supposed to be work, right?). At least that is what I try to do. LOL! I feel guilty that everything is not done..

    Great post!

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