If you are feeling down or are
not getting much accomplished,
you may have simply pushed yourself
too hard for too long.
The solution? Take a break! Then you can return to the things at hand, and you will see things in a different light. When you clear your mind then revisit the tasks you need to accomplish, you will find that you are getting much more done more effectively.
There is something about our brains that resists long-term repetition. Think of this as if the brain were one of your body’s muscles. You know that if you overuse a muscle, it becomes less effective. In fact, workout experts say that the most effective types of workouts involve “body confusion.” This means that you are not making the same motions over and over again. The reasoning behind this is that your body will find the easiest way to handle repetitive motions, and in doing so will burn fewer calories and build less muscles.
Now, apply that analogy to the brain. Our brains are created to do things efficiently. When we are looking for inspiration and creativity, efficiency is not necessarily what we want. In fact, efficiency, although we usually think of that as a “good” word, can be a “bad” word when we are trying to take on a multi-faceted task! Instead of efficient, think of repetitious work as “tedious.” This helps us understand why we must “confuse” our minds and shake things up occasionally when we are working on higher-order tasks.
Now that you understand that repetition and tedium is not good for your brain, what can you do about it? Fortunately, there seems to be a natural remedy for this problem: stop what you are doing and do something else. Just a few minutes of stretching, a walk around the block, taking time to cook something or even a short nap can completely change your outlook on a difficult task. If you want to change things, take a break, clear your mind and revisit the task after you have taken time to refresh yourself. You will do a much better job in the long run!