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5 Minute Refreshers (For Those Who Need to Reboot)

5 Minute Refreshers (For Those Who Need to Reboot)

When you normally think of the word “refresh” a number of things might come to mind, as in refreshing a webpage, drinking a glass of orange juice, or stepping outside for some air. As each of us go throughout our day, we’re faced with many propositions, decisions, and even obstacles that sometimes twist us up so much that we just need…to…breathe.

With that being said, refreshers are never meant to be complete shutdowns (like turning off your computer), they’re intended for brief pauses in our busy schedules to help us return to a calmer state and be more productive at work. Here are ten 5 minute refreshers that you can try today:

1. Meditate to clear your mind and refocus.

Man Sitting

    Something that I’ve recently tried is meditating during which I just close my eyes and focus on my breathing while trying to keep my mind clear. When you find yourself needing to refocus, take 5 minutes to close your eyes and clear your mind. Focus on your breathing and even try taking in one great breath and then expelling the air from your lungs 3 times. Try this refresher when you need to refocus.

    2. Have a sip of your favorite tea.

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    PreparingTea

      Any kind of tea that suits your fancy! Personally, I find jasmine green tea to be soothing and energizing. Certain teas can provide clarity, stress relief, be helpful for losing weight, energy, and digestion. Try this package deal for a brief boost in the afternoons.

      3. Read inspirational or motivational messages.

        Reading inspirational or motivational messages are especially helpful when you find yourself feeling low, overwhelmed, or out of sync. You can download a mobile app to read scriptures, check a website for famous quotes, or even complete daily or weekly guidance plans– any of these options are helpful. You might even stumble upon motivational messages from individuals who have experienced, or are experiencing, similar situations as yourself. As always, as long as there is life, there is hope and a chance to learn and grow. Spend 5 minutes reading an inspirational or motivational message for encouragement.

        4. Go for a brisk walk.

          Walking it out can help, especially with a change in scenery and fresh air. Fill in 5 minutes on your online calendar for a brisk walk by taking the long way around your office building or stepping outside for a brief stroll down the street. Exercising helps to release the hormone serotonin that contributes to our happiness. You might even consider jogging, but just a little movement can help to shift the mental weight from your brain.

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          5. Talk it out with a friend, family member, or colleague.

            It can be amazing sometimes what talking to a friend, family member, or colleague can do. Socializing is important, and when we have many issues flooding our brains, sometimes to the point of overwhelm, we often need to talk to someone. If you have a close friend or colleague in your office, you might consider stopping by to check on them and see how they are doing. Reversing the point-of-view can help to lighten your mood and steer your mind away from negative feelings. Even a few text messages with that special someone may help to brighten your day.

            6. Add glee with some Vitamin C.

              Have you had your glass of OJ today? Vitamin C is vital and important to our bodies for immunity, concentration, and improving our mood. Surprisingly, you might also find yourself feeling refreshed, more focused, and ready to be more productive at work by having a glass of a fruit drink like grapefruit juice, grape juice, apple juice, or even by taking this vitamin in supplement form. Also, try out these meals for lunch instead of the old ham sandwich and soup.

              7. Go on a brief ride.

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                Getting away from the office or your desk while on break might be the refresher you need–just don’t leave and not come back! Consider a 5 minute ride away from the office, and if you’re in a scenic area, you might be able to take in different sights and sounds. With spring approaching us, this is one of the best times to take a ride around the block with trees, flowers, and shrubbery beginning to bloom.

                8. Tell your colleagues “Game on!”

                  Ping pong, darts, or a bean toss throwing contest anyone? Get your game on for 5 minutes to refresh yourself so that you can be more productive at work afterwards. If a colleague is also on break, challenge them to a round and double up with conversation. During the day, we all need several moments to chill and regroup. Plus, you’ll also boost those serotonin levels by stepping up your activity!

                  9. Try a change of environment.

                    Don’t literally move your desk or chair, but temporarily migrate to a different location. If you’re seeking peace and quiet, consider a break-room that’s typically empty or a quiet lounge. If you’re looking for entertainment to help take your mind off of your situation, head for a more lively area such as a dining area, basketball court, tennis court, or park where you could find someone to chat with.

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                    10. Sing to lighten your spirit.

                      Exercise your vocal cords to a favorite song to help shift the mental weight. Even if you’re not the best singer or someone who’s just signed a record deal, you can still use your voice for comfort and happiness. Anyone can become a better singer– all you need to do is practice, and what better way to find a harmony than by practicing for 5 minutes?

                      And there you have it–ten 5 minute refreshers for your midday recharge! Stay productive, but don’t wear yourself too thin. If your monitor needs a break by shutting off its screen every now and then, then you know that we need breaks too. So instead of shutting yourself down or quitting completely, try one of these tips to reboot and get back in sync.

                      Featured photo credit: VisualHunt via visualhunt.com

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                      Jalesa Campbell

                      All-Star Generalist

                      NineSmartProductivityHacksTeachersThumbnail 9 Smart Productivity Hacks for Teachers (Infographic) Office desktop computer with mug and glasses 5 Minute Refreshers (For Those Who Need to Reboot)

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                      Last Updated on April 6, 2020

                      15 Best Productivity Hacks for Procrastinators

                      15 Best Productivity Hacks for Procrastinators

                      Let me guess.

                      You should be doing something else rather than reading this article. But due to some unknown force of nature, you decided to procrastinate by reading an article about how to hack procrastination. You deserve a pat on the back.

                      Fortunately, procrastination is not a disease. It’s just a mindset that can be changed, however, here are some productivity tips you need to start getting work done:

                      First, you need to acknowledge that procrastinating is an unhealthy habit. Not only you’re prioritizing unimportant things, basically, nothing gets done. Still unsure if you’re a procrastinator? Check out this article: Types of Procrastination (And How To Fix Procrastination And Start Doing)

                      Second, your commitment to change is very important. You should be physically, emotionally, and mentally determined to change this habit. If not, then you’ll just succumb to the tempting lure of doing other things rather than your tasks or chores.

                      Here are sthe best productivity hacks to improve productivity and keep yourself from procrastinating at work:

                      1. Give (10+2)*5 a Try

                      Let’s start with a classic but very effective hack called (10+2)*5 created by Merlin Mann,[1] author of 43Folders.com. Don’t worry. This is not a complicated Mathematical formula you need to solve.

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                      The (10+2)*5 simply means 10 minutes work + 2 minutes break multiplied by 5, completing 1 hour. It is crucial to stick with the time limits and not skipping work and break schedules. The point of this is for you to create a jam-packed routine of work and break schedules. The result? You will eventually skip your break schedules.

                      2. Use Red and Blue More Often

                      Clean your desk and remove things that might distract you. According to a Science Daily study[2] about which colors improve brain performance, red was found out to increase attention to details while blue sparks creativity. Surrounding your workplace with these colors not only benefits your brain, it’s also pleasing to the eye.

                      3. Create a Break Agenda

                      List all the things you want to do on your break, be it surfing the web, checking your emails, snack time, taking selfies, Facebook/Twitter—everything.

                      Like the (10+2)*5 hack, squeeze these in between work time but the difference is you schedule these activities for ONLY 20 minutes. Eventually, you’ll take your break minutes wisely. You’re finishing tasks while sidetracking to doing the things you enjoy.

                      4. Set a Timetable for Your Tasks

                      Like any other habits, procrastinating is a tough wall to break. Replace this habit with another habit. When you’re assigned a task, set a timetable for each step. Let’s say you have a big research task. Here’s a sample timetable:

                      9:00 – 9:10 am – Set up all your tools, browser tabs, emails, coffee, etc..
                      9:10 – 10:00 am – Internet research
                      10:00 – 10:45 am – Look through existing files
                      10:45 – 11:00 am – Break time!
                      11:00 – 12:00 pm – Outline the research report

                      Deadlines are the best hack for getting things done. Setting a specific time to finish a task creates time pressure even if the deadline has passed.

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                      5. Take It Outside!

                      Do yourself a favor and don’t ruin the comfy vibe of your home. If you need to work on a stressful project, do it in a library or coffee shop. You’ll never finish it anyway. Your cozy sofa and toasty bed will just lure you into napping yourself to doom.

                      6. Become Productively Lazy

                      Instead of finding all sorts of ways to unproductively procrastinate, use your habit to look for shortcuts and new ways to finish your tasks. Staple multiple papers at a time or master the 3-second t-shirt folding technique. A strong drive combined with laziness sometimes bring out the productive and creative side you never knew you have!

                      7. Assign a ‘Task Deputy’

                      It could be your colleague, your supervisor, or your significant other, anyone who has the unforgiving guts to reprimand you when you procrastinate. You could go the extra mile by paying up unfinished tasks or times you open your Facebook or watch a funny cat video on YouTube. Let’s see how five bucks every time you procrastinate will change you.

                      8. Consider a Gadget-Free Desk

                      According to a study by Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, average users check on their phones 150 times per day and having your phone just an elbow away just creates sizzle to this habit.[3]

                      Removing mobile devices and gadgets allows you to focus on your work without the constant interruption from notifications, calls, and text messages. It eliminates the very distracting ambiance and the urge to unlock your phone just because.

                      9. Prepping the Night

                      Before hitting the sack to oblivion, prepare everything you’ll need the next day. This will probably take you 15 minutes tops, saving you more time for coffee in the morning.

                      Spin class at am? Pack up your gym clothes, shoes, socks, etc. or better, create a checklist so you don’t miss anything. You can also prep your food into containers and just grab one before leaving.

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                      10. Do a 7-Minute Workout in the Morning

                      Exercising is proven to increase productivity and stimulate release of endorphin or “Happy Hormones”.

                      Take a jog outdoors and get warmed up for the day. Don’t feel like running outside? Hop on a treadmilli. It’s a great investment and there are a lot of ways you can use a treadmill like endurance running and metabolism training. On a budget? Here’s a 7 minute, no-equipment needed workout you can do at home:

                      11. Set-up Mini Tasks

                      If you’re given a big project, break it down into mini tasks. Create a checklist and start with the easy ones until you finish. Got an article to write? Just start with the title and the first sentence. Or perhaps you have a visual presentation to make?

                      Spend 15 minutes on your outline, take five minutes coffee break, then finish the first two slides. Accomplishing something, no matter how tiny, still gives you that sense of fulfillment.

                      12. Create an Inspirational Board or Reminder

                      I found these mini desk chalkboards from Etsy you can use to write motivating quotes.

                      Or you know what? Simply write “Do it now!” and stare at it for 10 seconds every time you feel like dropping by on Reddit.

                      13. Redecorate Your Room

                      Redecorating my room motivates me to maintain that ‘new’ look for some time until I get use to it and eventually stop. So I redecorate again and again, it became a monthly habit really. Here are some DIY ideas you can do to any room without spending much.

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                      14. Ready Your Nibbles

                      You know that trip to the pantry? It’s just seconds away but it took you several minutes just to get your fruit snacks in the fridge. Before starting a task, prepare your nibbles on your desk to avoid zoning out and losing yourself on the way to the pantry.

                      Bonus productivity hacks you can do at home:

                      15. Schedule Your Chores

                      Write down your chores in a weekly basis with matching day and time when you should be doing these.

                      For the artsy folks, you can create fun chore charts like these or simply stick the list somewhere visibly annoying e.g. mirrors, doors, TV. The trick is listing as many chores as you can for the week and including unfinished chores the following week. Who likes seeing a long list of chores first thing in the morning?

                      More Tips to Overcome Procrastination

                      Featured photo credit: Glenn Carstens-Peters via unsplash.com

                      Reference

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