It's easy to get stuck at our desks for the whole workday and neglect taking all or part of our lunch hour. There are plenty of productive things you can do during your break that can help decrease your stress level and make the second half of your day feel like a breeze. The important thing is to stretch your legs and switch gears for a little while. Try to make time for some of these tasks:
1. Go to the gym
You can join a gym near your office and get in some exercise during your lunch hour. That way, when you get home after a long day, you don't have to feel guilty about not having the energy to do your workout then! If you don't want to join a gym, then try a quick run or bike ride.
2. Mail your packages
Since post-office hours are limited on weekends, make use of your time by mailing packages and letters during lunch. You'll have one less thing to worry about on Saturday and more time to enjoy your days off.
3. Go to an eye, dentist, or doctor appointment
Find a doctor who has an office near your workplace, and squeeze in an appointment while you have a break. This may not always work depending on the type of appointment, but if it's just a quick checkup, you could make it happen!
4. Do yoga
Particularly good on a stressful day, yoga is a perfect break activity because it can be done almost anywhere. If you don't have a studio or gym nearby, just grab your mat and find an empty office or conference room to use. If it's nice out, find a good spot outdoors, and get some sun while you're at it!
5. Read a book or magazine
Allow yourself some much-deserved downtime, and pick up a book. Any type of reading is great, but a physical copy of a book is ideal so that your eyes get a break from screens.
6. Mingle with co-workers
Instead of holing yourself up at your desk all day, spend some time speaking with other employees and network with the people around you.
7. Call your family
Use the lunch hour to step outside and catch up with family and friends, especially if you live in different cities and don't get to see each other often.
8. Drop off and pick up dry cleaning
A lot of offices are near dry cleaners and tailors, and some buildings even have their own. Take advantage of this, and bring your clothes in for tailoring or cleaning. Most dry cleaners have normal business hours, so you may not be able to swing by on your way home if you work late.
9. Go shopping
Yes, we said it! Shopping on your lunch break means that you can get things checked off your list, but with limited time, your spending is also limited.
10. Take a power nap
If you need a quick refresher, find a quiet spot, and catch a few z's before you have to go back to work.
This may seem obvious, but it's important that you make time to eat during the workday. Some days can be super busy, and you may have to eat while you work, but most of the time, stepping away from all of that and giving yourself a breather can make the rest of the day seem way more doable.