January 23, 2015 | Posted in: Living Hartfully

A pause for the cause does wonders for your productivity and your soul. Slow down on that super highway or get off the beaten path and find a trail. The mind, body, and spirit all need downtime to refresh, relax, recuperate, rejuvenate, recreate, and regenerate for what lies ahead.

After the pause, you will come back with more vigor and vitality to take on life. Employers have found that allowing workers to telecommute, job share, or have a flexible work schedule to accommodate other facets of their lives will improve loyalty, dedication, productivity, and focus at work. Work-life balance and mental health breaks are critical to our health and the health of an organization. Performance research from the Swiss Polytechnic Institute shows that when workers perform a task for longer than 20-30 minutes straight, the time they need to solve the problem increases by 500%. It would be wise to take a short break at least each hour to improve your concentration, your productivity, and your problem solving ability.

Other studies have found that if you perform an activity that uses the opposite side of the brain than the side you have been using for the task, the benefits are even greater when you come back to your task because you have let that side of your brain take a break. Studies out of the National Recreation and Park Association show that even short leisure moments in your day build resilience to future stress.

Why not incorporate your pet into your break. Animals significantly contribute to your peace of mind and playfulness. Pet popularity has been on the increase and their psychotherapeutic affects are long-lasting. Our “best friends” can give us a boost like no other with their unconditional love and affection. My newly-adopted doxi, Fozzi, is proof positive of the positive affects of pets.

Research indicates the positive effects of pet therapy and the calming, yet energizing effect pets have on the people around them.  Stroking them and being around their happy dispositions create a positive connection, adding joy to people’s lives. Their only reason for being is to enjoy life. Why not take a queue from our animals? Have you ever noticed how excited your pet is to see you after you’ve been gone all day? Do your kids, your spouse, or your family members exude a similar reaction? Why not try being as enthusiastic with your greetings as your pet and watch the reactions to your newfound energy.

Matt Weinstein’s book How to Work Like Your Dog is a great read on how to lighten up and be more like your pet.


As the CEO (Chief Energizing Officer) at Hartful Living including GaiaHart.com and BizBuilderCards.com; I’m a Messenger and Mentor for women entrepreneurs, connecting them to their capacity to energize their work and their lives in the art of living Hartfully. At BizBuilderCards.com, you can make a living through giving with greeting cards and gifts to build your network net worth as an additive to your current business or an easy way to send gratitude and kindness to the world.