Taking a Mental Health Break From Work

Taking a mental health break from work

It has been almost 100 years since the idea of the 9 to 5 workweek was introduced by the Ford Motor Company, before being standardised across the world a decade later.

The concept has remained the standard across borders, continents, and industries. However, the adaptation to home-working in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic saw many workers and bosses alike realise that the rigid formula of 9-5 may no longer be the ideal format for all. 

Studies have shown that people who are self-employed are generally more satisfied in life. A more flexible schedule allowing for more regular breaks from work when needed is often cited as a major reason for this happiness. 

A survey conducted in the United States last year showed that out of 5000 employees, nearly 83% felt emotionally drained by their work, and 71% of those workers strongly agreed that the workplace had an effect on their personal mental health. 

So what can be done to ease this mental health epidemic on our workers, those employees whose day-to-day routines are making them feel trapped? How can taking a mental health break from work benefit these people on both a personal, and professional level?

Why Rest is Important 

For years, employers have operated under the mindset that the more their workers work, the greater the overall output. This idea is that an employee working for 50 hours will have better results than one who works for 35. This way of thinking however, does not consider the individual worker; their ability, their headspace, tiredness, fatigue, etc.

New research has turned this theory in its head. We now know that a worker who feels trusted and more rested is likely to outperform one who is overworked and micromanaged. In early 2022, the 4 Day Week campaign announced that they were trialling the concept in the UK in collaboration with around 30 businesses, with the goal of putting this belief into practice across the country.

The benefits of rest are endless, but can include: 

  • A rested brain: The human brain is a muscle, if you run a 5k every single day, eventually the muscles in your legs will begin to fail. The same can be said for your brain. Overwork it and eventually it will begin to break down. 
  • Additional productivity: Studies conducted into the subject across the years have consistently found that proper rest can increase worker productivity and efficiency. 
  • Promotes better physical and mental health: Being overworked can have an impact on a person’s sleep, as well as their physical and mental health. An employee who spends their entire day unable to keep their eyes open, or one that can’t concentrate because they have been worn down into sickness will not be able to perform to the level they are expected to. 
  • Encourages creativity: Allowing your brain to switch off is an excellent way to promote creativity and innovation. Over the course of human history, some of our greatest minds, from Albert Einstein and Leonardo Da Vinci, to Martin Luther King and Ernest Hemingway have regularly actively sought solitude in an effort to refine and refocus their thinking.  In a letter, Einstein wrote, “How conducive to thinking and working the long sea voyage is — a paradisiacal state without correspondence, visits, meetings, and other inventions of the devil!”
  • Better decision making: Too long without a break can seriously affect a person’s ability to concentrate and make key decisions. Overworking employees can lead to mistakes being made that can affect output, as well as the health and safety of the workforce. 

How to Rest After Work

Being glued to screens and the internet from dawn to dusk has left our brains overloaded. The most important step you can make when deciding how to rest after work is to literally switch off; no phone, no laptop, no TV. Take a step back from the internet, and plug yourself back into the world around you. 

Too much time spent working long hours on tight deadlines before going home and spending your evening hooked to a screen can easily result in burnout. And burnout, if left unchecked, can quickly lead to forced sabbaticals as a last ditch attempt to give your brain a long overdue rest. While the idea of a sabbatical may seem sound, the issues you face that force you onto sabbatical will, in many cases, be waiting for you once you return to work.

At Live off Grid we believe that shorter, more regular periods of disconnection can be much more beneficial than extended periods of burnout leading to a long rest. More regular personal breaks can increase productivity, motivation, and improve the sharpness of your mind. 

We were born out of this mindset. At Live off Grid we believe that the modern professional needs access to spaces that will allow them to step away from the abundance of screens of 21st century life, and return to nature, to rest and recharge.

Using natural, sustainable materials we give new life to shipping containers as purpose-built light spaces that can restore you to the world — without needing to sacrifice the stylish modern comforts and luxuries.

When and Where Can You Take Breaks From Work?

The beauty of Live off Grid is that you can escape the rat race without ever having to truly leave if you don’t wish to. One of our reconditioned shipping containers is as suitable in an urban garden as it is in the grounds of an expansive manor house in the country. 

All it takes to truly disconnect and return to nature is appropriate access and the suitable space to do so. An area that you know you can go to that is devoid of the noise, the glare, the petty pressures and stresses that life can bring. A space for you to switch off and be at one with nature, and be at one with yourself.

Take the Break You Deserve

Live off Grid represents an opportunity. A chance to disconnect from the world around you, to rediscover the wonder and beauty of nature, without the interruption of constant notifications, pings, and alerts. 

It provides flexibility. Whether you are a homeowner who wants a place to relax at the end of their garden, a landowner who wants to utilise their available space to help people disconnect while also earning an extra passive income, or an office worker in need of somewhere to work from that can boost their mental health instead of detract from it. 

No matter who you are, a Live off Grid shipping container can allow you to take a much needed mental health break from your work — to disconnect from stress and rediscover your true self.

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