With so many of us commuting farther to work these days, it’s often impossible to go home, eat lunch and relax during a one-hour lunch break. But so many of us need some time to step away from our desks to just take a breather. Here are five ideas for your lunch hour to help you escape the stresses of work and refresh midway through your day.
Nap. If you drive to work, slip away to your car and take a short nap. If you don’t drive to work, find a quiet place nearby, such as a coffee shop or library, to catch a snooze. You’ll feel refreshed and won’t be sleepy-eyed as you finish out your workday. Just remember to set an alarm, such as a cell-phone, so you won’t sleep too long and return to work late.
Walk. Catch some fresh air and take a walk in a nearby neighborhood, stroll along the sidewalks near your office, or head to the nearest shopping mall or outdoor track. Make sure you wear walking shoes so your feet won’t hate you later. Walking can lower your stress level, prevent depression, and relieve arthritis and back pain.
Read. Reading can help take your mind off your daily routine. Find a quiet place to read within your building, or even better, find an area outside to sit while you delve into your favorite book or magazine.
Explore. Check out a store or eatery you’ve never visited, and experience something new in your community. Or, visit a local library, museum or park. A break from your normal routine will energize your day or even your week. Changing your habits can also pep up your outlook and brighten your attitude.
Volunteer. Visit a nearby school, community center or non-profit organization, and donate your time. Whether it’s reading to children, working with senior citizens or organizing special projects, these groups always need volunteers. You’ll be giving back to your community and gain improved self-esteem.
Try napping, walking, reading, shopping or volunteering the next time you’re feeling overwhelmed at work or just need to get away from your desk. You’ll feel recharged and be able to finish out the workday strong.
How do you spend your lunch break? What are your favorite lunchtime escapes?