Catching a Break

breakLast month, I did something very important, which I highly recommend for your well-being and entrepreneurial success: I took a break from posting a blog!

While I had a few ideas rolling around, none of the ideas inspired me enough to move forward. I took notes, mulled over the ideas, and ultimately…realized it was simply time to give myself a well-deserved break!

As I wrote in a FB post last month, I have been publishing this blog for ten years, and I learned early on to only publish what inspires me and feels important to share. Which is why it was easy for me to give myself a break last month  and why that lesson is part of the message this month. I know from past experience that when nothing feels inspiring, I will come back with inspiration after some time to relax and recharge.

Giving Yourself a Break

More and more, psychologists, brain researchers, and successful entrepreneurs are discovering how much more productive and healthy (and successful) we are when we experience regular rest, relaxation, and fun!

It makes sense, too, because we now know that the brain begins to lose clarity and become less effective when it is tired or stressed. If productivity and creativity matter, then giving yourself a break is essential.

You may even have experienced being overwhelmed and stressed, then notice that you feel so much better after a few minutes laughing with colleagues and friends, spending time with loved ones, getting some fresh air while watching clouds go by, or taking a drive in your car. These are just a few ways we can ‘catch a break’!

I don’t know anyone, employed or self-employed, who isn’t working long hours and juggling their personal and professional lives. The human body is not meant to work 18 hour days on an ongoing basis.The importance of building in some time to relax, mentally unwind, rest if needed, and find some joy in life cannot be over-stated.

Catch A Break Every Day

breakYou might be thinking: WHEN am I going to find time to take a break? Here’s the ‘catch’: We don’t need to take a month away from our work to benefit from a break! In addition our regular vacation time, we can easily build ‘break’ time into every day life.

In fact, developing a regular wellness habit of resting, relaxing, and having fun every day will make you less likely to need long vacations.

Below are ways you can develop a regular wellness habit:

• Set boundaries and Honor Them – If you’re not used to doing this, give yourself 30 days to commit to setting boundaries around your work and personal life, and the demands put upon you by other or yourself. Know what works for you, and make the boundaries clear to yourself so there’s less blur and more clarity!

• Meditation and Mindfulness – Both meditation and mindfulness provide important rest to the mind, body, and spirit. If you already have a meditation practice you love, that’s great. If you’re still working on one, consider Intentional Resting or even just taking time out to watch clouds or the wind in the trees. Nature provides endless ways to stop, notice, and watch (plants, animals, birds, bugs, wind, clouds, etc.).

• Exercise – Whether it’s full-on time at the gym, a walk around the ‘hood, or 15 minutes dancing in your livingroom, exercise helps us release built-up stress and is it’s own form of relaxation. Whatever form of exercise you choose, it’s suggested that we ‘break a sweat’, the body’s way of letting go of emotions and toxins (along with deep breathing)!

• Laughter, Joy, and Appreciation – For me laughter tends to be spontaneous, and my kitty is often the source of laughter, great joy, and deep appreciation. Find some sources of laughter, joy, and appreciation you can seek out every day. It might be a certain YouTube channel, or a favorite book or movie series. A gratitude journal lets you milk the joy and appreciation even more.

• Wind Down – I started doing this a few years ago, and find it contributes to sleeping very well at night. I set a time, at least a half hour before bedtime, to turn off all screens and (if possible) all lights. Backlighting on electronic screens send a signal to the brain that it’s *daytime*, which keeps us awake and unable to wind down before bedtime. Turn off all screens, and give yourself a good 30 minutes to be…mindful, meditative, or just deep breath while snuggling with your pet(s) or family. You’ll be amazed how much better you sleep!

The added benefit of developing a habit of ‘catching a break’, is that you’re energetic sending a signal to the Universe that you value your time, that you enjoy the journey, and that you are ready for more ways to experience value and enjoyment. Imagine what wonderful experiences you’ll bring into your life!

How do you catch a break every day? Share your experiences in the comments section, below…

Image Credit: Barry-Jansson & Associates
based on image from iciakp.


Nancy Barry-JanssonNancy Barry-Jansson is a Metaphysical Teacher / Mentor who specializes in helping creative and healing women entrepreneurs grow and prosper through their businesses. She has spent more than 33+ years with metaphysical studies and been running her own creative business for more than 23 years. Learn more at AffirmingSpirit.com.

Effective Solopreneur: The Power of Taking Breaks

“Problems cannot be solved at the same level
of awareness that created them.” -Albert Einstein

I see it way too often: Solo business owners, accustomed to wearing many hats, working too long, often without breaks, and so overwhelmed that they haven’t noticed how ineffective they’ve become.

Ineffectiveness is the grim reaper for a solopreneur. Previously, I blogged about the paradigm shift toward more conscious business ownership and stewardship.

In the outdated business models, the route to success is paved only with hard work, struggle, sacrifice, and more hard work. Action, any action, no matter how off-base or  inappropriate was better than no action at all. If you just kept taking action, at some point you’d have success, and course-correction was a necessary daily ritual.

The above description is nothing new to anyone who worked for a high-tech company during the last 20 years~the experience is like non-stop unproductive chaos. It always amazed me when any of those tech companies made money, since it seemed to happen entirely *in spite* of the lack of focus or productivity!

In the new paradigm for conscious businesses, the route that brings the fastest and most effective results is driven by inspired action. Chaos is replaced with calm knowing. The outcome is always kept in mind, and course-correction is rarely necessary.

Inspiration, however, comes to those who are centered and have enough quiet time in their day to hear their intuitive guidance. To receive the guidance for inspired action, successful solo business owners *make* time for regular respits from their work.

Every successful business person, especially solopreneurs, has had to learn to create a regular schedule of quiet time. Thomas Edison was known for taking naps during the day.  Others employed various forms of meditation, including mindful moving meditations or walks in nature.

Regardless of the method you use to get *quiet* time away from your work, it is important to schedule these breaks even when you think you’re too busy to take time away from work. In fact, it’s usually THEN that you need that quiet break the most!

The benefits of regular breaks from your business, whether 10 minutes or 10 week sabbatical, go beyond the obvious: When we are too close to the problems in our business, we can’t see beyond them to the potential solutions. Trying to force a solution under those stressful circumstances actually keeps us stuck longer.

When we step away from problems, we shift our vibration enough to be out of the energy of the problem, and closer to the energy of a solution. Sudden flashes of insight and inspiration are more likely to happen when we are relaxing, and breathing deeply, than when we are under stress and breathing shallowly. Taking breaks improves your energy vibration and the oxygen flow to your BodyMind (the intelligence that functions in every cell in your body).

If you are small business owner or solopreneur who hasn’t been taking breaks, start scheduling regular breaks away from your work area.

If you are a business owner who has been taking regular breaks, drop us a comment below to share what works for you and the benefits you’ve experienced as a result.

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