How to destress

How to take breaks

When is it time to take a break?
Any time you prefer!
As of mini-breaks, it’s good to do it often/on a constant basis, as of unplugging from your devices and spending time offline to take a little breather. Especially during these rough times when we might be spending lots of time in front of a screen, it’s important to use the 20-20-20 rule to prevent both mental strain and eye strain:
Every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds
However it’s crucial that you take a break, whether it is:
After working hard on a very strenous, time-straining task (such as exams, feeling numb, or a big milestone in life)
Emotional/Mental Wellbeing (it’s important to balance work time with essential self-care time, for activities such as talking to a friend, taking naps, and stretching.)
You’re going through a stressful interpersonal conflict (family conflicts, interpersonal trauma, traumatic event, etc.)
You feel really stressed and burnt out
You feel overworked due to taking on lots of responsibilities
You have lots of commitments at once and it is overwhelming for you
Any reason is valid, and you can take a break as long as you want 💗 Know that you’re an amazing human and your mental health matters.
Ways to take a break
1. Take a break off social media
This could be Instagram, Slack, Discord, Twitter, or virtually any social media platform that negatively affects your mental health. In the world of tech 👩‍💻, you can block sites, delete apps nowadays. Yes, it may be hard, but it’s important to take a break off of social media to avoid doomscrolling, which is constant exposure of bad news on social media platforms.
2. Communicate to others your boundaries!
This could be something like taking a break off Slack for a week and letting someone take over your tasks for a little bit. By setting a boundary for your mental health and understanding your capacity, your jobs could be much more feasible. And also so when you’re on break, you won’t have much anxiety :)) Understand that you are a marvelous human being, and as a wonderful human productivity doesn’t define your self-worth. You are amazing just the way you are ❤️
3. Journal of what tasks are too much for you, or talk to friends to vent
Finding the cause of why you feel stressed or burnt out is important to making breaks easier to take along with making breaks more impactful :)) You could talk to a friend you trust to vent. Or you could take out a sheet of paper or Google Docs, and just write out how you are feelings, and dump it all. Or you could make a table too, one column for what you’re grateful for/what you love about yourself/favorite songs, one for your to-do list, and one column to list words that describe how you feel at the moment and things that are bothering you.
Sample Table
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Gratitude
To-Do List
How I feel and What's Bothering me
1
i’m good at ______!
write article
Frustrated
2
_______ is always there for me <3
finish final project
Math
3
my favorite song:
activism stuff..
lonely
4
things that make me happy:
practicing a hobby
isolated in pandemic
5
my favorite radio host/podcast
There are no rows in this table
From then on, you could link in the things that bother you and the things you are grateful for with your to-do list. For example, if you have mandatory math exam/projects that bothers you, you could try to delegate activism tasks to others and take a little break from activism, and spend 20 minutes focusing on that project listening to your favorite song or wearing your favorite clothes. You could shrink your to-do list by delegating tasks to others and matching a positive with a negative :))
4. Eat, stretch, and sleep
Physical self-care is also important! It might not seem like a lot at first, but something as nice as having a good night’s sleep, making a healthy salad, having a good morning stretch, or just taking a few minutes out of your day to be thankful/smile can help a bit!
5. Seek professional help/learn coping strategies if needed and check out for examples of things to do during your break :))
For types of mental health issues and some resources for professional help, check out
Here are some if needed too.
Whatever you do, please don’t ignore your stress!
You deserve a break for your hard work, and it’s important to take a step back, especially during burnout or lots of stress 💞
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