We are a nation of over-workers. We work more hours, clock up more overtime, take less holiday and lend more of our mental energy to our jobs than ever before. Research shows that time off improves our performance, but for many the intense stress of returning to work after a holiday makes taking a break not worthwhile. See below these signs that indicate you may just need some time away…even if it’s the last thing you want.
You Snooze, You Lose
Hitting the snooze button when exhausted is understandable, but setting the alarm super early just so you can hit the snooze button can indicate something slightly more sinister. Getting up early is tiring, but actively and intentionally delaying that moment could mean you need a longer break.
You Have a Short Fuse
We all get angry, but at times I think most of us are self-aware enough to realise when we’re a ticking time bomb as supposed to a little ticked off. If the slightest thing brings you to boiling point, you may well need a little more TLC and a little less 9-5.
Complain, Complain Complain
Most of us love a little moan about life and work from time to time. But if it’s the focal point of the majority of your conversations be these with loved ones, friends or even colleagues – you may need a change of scenery, even temporarily. When the work becomes the problem, something deeper is at play – you’re not happy.
Sleep, What Sleep?
Sporadic and inconsistent sleeping patterns can often indicate stress – particularly if the reason for not sleeping is because you’re thinking, and even dreaming about work when you do eventually nod off. Sleep is critical – and without it we don’t function optimally, in fact in certain situations (such as driving) we’re downright dangerous when sleep deprived. Sleep aids can often leave us foggy and “out of it” too – so not sleeping is something you should most definitely look into if it’s affecting your quality of life.
Lack of Progression
Lack of progression is a tricky thing to deal with. It may not be the salary you feel isn’t progressing, it may be you feel your key skills are not being valued or you’re just not being pushed as you feel you should. Progression at work is more important to the current working generation than ever. A break can serve to provide clarity about how you can approach the problem – whether it can be dealt with in your current capacity or you need to think about changing jobs, even careers.
The trouble with a lot of the above mentioned habits is in low proportions, they’re symbolic of typical and non-detrimental daily life and stresses. But, as soon as they start to impact your day to day functioning and happiness – it’s time to take a time out.