Learning to take a break

img des: Person sitting at a desk holding a pen and looking pained

Author: Heena

We’re well into January now, and for many students it is peak school-season. Between tests, assignments, work and personal life, it seems like there aren’t enough hours in a day. While constantly juggling the many responsibilities and tasks in our life, it can be easy to fall trap to the idea that working 24/7 is the way to go.

Recently the media has continued to push the agenda of the so-called Hustle culture. A culture that states that every second of our day should be dedicated to working or “hustling.” This culture feeds us the idea that every passing second is a missed opportunity, and the worst you think you can do is relax and take a step back. If you want success, you need to earn it through relentless dedication.

It seems simple right? Hard work = Success. It seems nice in theory but in practice it falls short of expectations. That mindset is damaging as it claims that happiness and success can only be achieved from constant overwork and sacrifice.

That mindset is damaging as it claims that happiness and success can only be achieved from constant overwork and sacrifice.”

In reality skipping breaks is the worst thing that you can do for yourself both physically and mentally.

It’s a path that will almost certainly lead to severe exhaustion and stress that eventually causes you to burn out. Not only does this take a toll on your mental health but in the process it will negatively impact the goals that got you in it in the first place.

Instead of striving to always be busy, we should learn to shift our focus on living a full and happy life.

Yes, living a full life involves working hard to achieve your goals, but it also includes taking breaks. Spending time on ourselves is not something that we should feel guilty about. In fact it’s quite the opposite, taking the time to enjoy life and dedicating time to benefit yourself increases your happiness, as well as your productivity in the long run. Especially during the busiest days. Our mind is not a machine, it’s just another organ. It needs to rest the same way any other part of our body would after a long run.

Let yourself breathe, spend time with your friends and family, go on walks and get out of the house. There’s a lot more to life than school and work and it’s important to remind yourself of that now and then.