Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Kicked into Perspective: Why taking a lunch break is really important whatever your job

I got kicked out this morning.

It was totally brutal.

Kicked out of my own flat, shoved out the door and told I couldn't come back for a couple of hours until I'd wandered around and had some 'Bectime'.

"BECTIME?!?!" I thought. "What the hell is Bectime at a time like this?!?  Term is ending, deadlines are looming, December is a horrifically short month business wise and He thinks I need Bectime?!?!"

The 'He' in question is of course my boyfriend.

Frustratingly, it looks like 'He' might just've been right.

Once out on the street I ambled down Cotham Hill.  I bought an advent candle.  Spent more money than I should've done in the Oxfam bookshop buying books really for me but with half a mind to Christmas presents (as a 'reasonable' excuse for frivolous spending).  I went to a cafe, ordered a pot of tea, wrote my journal, flicked through a magazine about Bristol, did some sewing of a gift I'm making for a friend.  I bought household essentials from Sainsbury's to get us through the next 24 hours and came home.

In that sort of saccharine way that you'll hate if you're a hater of hippie spiritual writings, it kind of turns out I brought something else home with me apart from dinner and some books.  Along the way I appear to have picked up Perspective.  And Perspective is starting to sprout a really calm and collected Plan.

One of the challenges of freelance/portfolio working (apart from dealing with it having a name like 'portfolio' working - I'm renaming it to 'patchwork working' I think) is that you don't really have a normal week.

I've been doing *something* work related - whether MA, business or barwork every day and night for about 10 days.  I'm not complaining (honest guv!) at all but I'm just staring down the barrel of proverbial truism that actually all work and no play leads to unimaginative, unproductive and cross procrastination rather than anything else.  On that basis it definitely makes sense to go take a break.

So wherever you are, whatever you're doing, my suggestion is that right now the best thing you can do for you, your employer, the people you care about in your life, your general mood/state of mind is to go put the kettle on, grab a chocolate hobnob and spend ten minutes doing something totally different.  I can't promise you what you'll do after that is going to be amazing but you'll feel less agitated/angry about it.

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