Confessions of a Hard Worker..(because I take my breaks)

I’m sure a lot of us think we are hard workers on the job.  We also tend to feel guilty about taking our breaks at work, to the point that we might eat at our desks and never leave the workplace.  So, is that a good idea?  You might think you’re showing your Superman or Supergirl powers at work, but truly, you are doing yourself, your boss, and your customers a disservice.

Here’s why not taking breaks through out the day at work is a bad idea. When you work out at the gym, or play sports, or move your whole household in one day, or work in the yard, don’t you allow yourself a break once in a while?  Why?  To recharge, of course.  Recharge your body, right? Your brain needs recharging too.

RECHARGE: verb; to make a new charge, especially to attack again. To revive or restore energy, stamina, enthusiasm.  To refresh and revitalize.

I need my energy restored throughout the day, both physically and mentally.  I’ve worked in both types of cultures, where every one takes their breaks, or no one takes breaks.  As a supervisor myself, I make sure my immediate reports take their breaks. I’ve seen it too many times when a person plays tough and refuses to take breaks or lunch, then comes back and sues the company. Worse, the work culture frowns upon breaks, so a person feels like they shouldn’t take breaks.  Yes, legality is part of it.  The real part though, is that I want my employees to come back  refreshed and revitalized. (hopefully)  Happy employees usually mean happy customers.

I do not agree with workplace cultures where the unspoken rule is not to take breaks. It encourages judgement and gossip against coworkers. In the reverse, taking breaks together when possible can build teamwork and comradeship.  Eating at your desk  encourages your boss or direct reports to interrupt.  Of course, there are sometimes certain circumstances where you might have to push back your breaks or lunch to take care of a crisis.

Not sure what to do during a break?  Here’s what I do sometimes.  Read a book. Get to know a coworker better. Play a game on my phone. Read the news. Come up with blog ideas. Stretch. Take a short walk outside.  Eat a snack to feed my body.  Meditate.  Practice mindfulness.  Check on my kids.  Check on my mom. You get the point. The important thing is to take a real timeout from work.  I can attest that when I come back from lunch, I’m ready, recharged and revitalized to face the second half of my work day!

 

 

Artemis: Ancient Goddess, Citizen of New York City?

I felt the need to write today, but my brain is misfiring in so many directions, that I decided to do something simple…a book review. So, please indulge me while I talk about one of the books that I’m reading. I hope you’ll give it a try. It’s a little bit outside the realm of leadership, but hey, it’s my blog, so why not?

I sing of Artemis, whose shafts are of gold, who cheers on the hounds, the pure maiden, shooter of stags, who delights in archery, own sister to Apollo. The Homeric Hymn to Artemis, circa 6th century BC

This is from the book titled The Immortals, by Jordana Max Brodsky.  Ancient Greek Gods are alive and well in 2016, with some residing in New York City.  They’ve taken on common names, as well as jobs, (the horror!) so as not to stick out.  Artemis’ name is Selena DiSilva.  Her twin brother, Apollo, is now Paul.  Her half brother Hermes, is known as Dash, and so on with other Gods.  Much like the movie Highlander, or most immortal type books and movies, they must disappear and reinvent their lives after a few decades.  Artemis/Selena, the Huntress, has done many versions of police work, detective work, protector of women and crime fighting.  Most of the Gods and Goddess’s powers are weakening over the centuries, until they finally go mad and/or die.  They are gradually aging and losing their powers, because not too many people these days are praying directly to the ancient Gods.  There are a few cute things, such as Hermes starting the clothesline, Hermes, which enables the God to still retain some power.

I would describe the book as part historical, part mystery, part suspense, and even some humor.  There are many flashbacks of Artemis’ Goddess life, and her past lives living on earth, making for fascinating reading and premises.  Fast forward to NYC, and Selena is a hard, lonely woman, patrolling the nights looking for abusers of women.  Two incidents jolt her into further action.  She finds the mutilated corpse of a woman with signs of an ancient ritual long forgotten committed on the woman, and power has begun to course through Selena’s body again.  Someone is praying to her and sacrificing women for a ritual.  Her sense of justice and ire has reminded her of who she really is, Artemis, daughter of Zeus and Leto, the Punisher and the Huntress.

I liked the writing style, and the obvious research that went into writing this book.  The dialogue is witty, biting, and real.  It’s a series, so I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the books.