How to Take a Break from Work and Relax

Working and being productive is important, but taking a break and relaxing should also be a priority. Check out a few tips to keep your mental health in check and not let stress affect your well-being!

Most of our time here is giving you tips on how to be more productive, efficient, and organized. That’s essential for a contractor, of course, but you also have to think about your physical and mental health. Neglecting yourself means that not only your work will suffer, but every other aspect of your personal life as well.

So let’s take a moment to talk about how you can take a break from work, relax, and recenter yourself. The hustle is very real and everyone needs a break at some point!


Meditating is not for everyone. If you groan at the idea alone, then it might be difficult for you to enjoy it, but I would still encourage you to try it. It might surprise you.

Besides, meditation can be done in a variety of ways that better suit your preferences. For example, it can be as simple as setting a timer for 15 minutes, finding a relaxing rain sound playlist on Spotify, and just enjoying that moment with your eyes closed. For that duration, mute your phone, silence notifications, and just sit there and try to relax.

Your mind will wander, that’s normal. But whenever it does, gently bring it back to the sound of rain. If you’re not a fan of rain, the ambiance can be anything else: white or brown noise, long ambient tracks, a compilation of relaxing music made for meditation… there are plenty of options.

The simplest way to understand why meditation works is to think of your brain as a muscle. If you train it, it will become stronger and capable of solving more complex problems, but like with any muscle, there is a limit. At some point, it will become fatigued and unable to function, no matter how much you try to push it. Meditation is allowing your brain to stretch, relax, and recover – and it goes a long way.

Drink water and have a more balanced diet

Having a bottle of fresh water with you is always a good idea. Staying hydrated is crucial to your daily routine, as well as having a balanced diet.

And yes, “having a balanced diet” is easier said than done. It’s not like you can just flip a switch in your brain to change your habits – we all have years of routine behavior that’s difficult to break from, even when we want to. I recommend starting slowly.

  • Instead of ordering a pizza, try getting something slightly healthier. 
  • Try to reduce the amount of sugar and wheat you consume, but don’t remove them from your diet entirely – you would feel awful for weeks or months if you tried to. 
  • Instead of going for the diet coke, maybe try some natural juice or water with ice and lemon. 
  • Remember to buy some produce, as well as quick healthy snacks when you go grocery shopping. 

Try to find healthier options that are still convenient for you, because the easier you can make it on yourself, the easier it is to start changing.

But if anything, remember to drink water. That alone helps a lot.

Take breaks from social media

Social media is already a huge part of your work, but as much as it can provide some entertainment in your off time, it can become an annoying addiction too. 

“Doom scrolling” can rob you of precious time you could use to take better care of yourself, read a book, or actually allow your brain to relax – instead of tiring even more.


Physical exercises are essential, but most contractors already get their fair share of exercise during the job. So instead, take a few minutes to stretch before and after more intense activities – it’s also a good way to spend a chunk of free time instead of doom-scrolling on your phone.

Take a walk


Not all contractor work is out on the field. If you find yourself stuck in the office too much, consider taking a short walk outdoors if possible. The point isn’t to tire yourself, it’s just an opportunity to clear your mind while performing a very low-intensity exercise, which your body appreciates.

Just walking around the block or offering to take the dog for a walk is already huge progress.

Read a book

There are thousands of books about business you can read as a way to take a break and do something productive for your work at the same time. Learning is fun, even more when you can apply what you learned to improve your life.

But you don’t have to read books on business. If you really want to take your mind off work, consider novels or short story collections. Reading one chapter of a novel a day is a decent goal in most cases, and simply reading does wonders for your imagination and creativity, which impacts all aspects of your life.

Seek professional help

If you’re having a hard time mentally and can’t seem to shake it off on your own, it might be more serious than you think. In that case, consider seeking the guidance of a therapist.

Anxiety, depression, and ADHD are only some of the most common mental health issues affecting millions of Americans. These issues can appear due to circumstances, but they can also be chronic and require long-term treatment, for years or for a lifetime. 

The best way to understand and deal with these issues is to talk to a therapist and receive proper guidance and medication. Sometimes, a simple condition that can easily be treated is all that was holding you back.

Work can be rewarding and fulfilling, but remember to take care of yourself!

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