The spaces we inhabit shape who we are and the people we have the potential to become. They have the power to influence our energy levels and our moods, and when they’re put together right, they can motivate and get us going—or, alternatively, help us wind down and recharge.
Whether you’re working from home or in a room full of people, once in a while it’s time to take a breather. After all, who’s truly productive for eight hours straight? Just one-fifth of the workforce, according to a recent poll from UK deals site VoucherHound. And the rest? Reportedly clocking in at only about three hours of true productivity per day.
So it stands to reason that taking a quality break from your work may actually increase your productivity when you get back to it. And when you’ve got a great BREAKSPACE to wind down in, there’s something more to look forward to than the endless scroll of your smartphone.
The finest break areas make it easy for employees to slow down, relax and renew, making them more productive and creative when they get back to work. Because when your space works, everything works. Here’s how Staples can help you:
No matter what kind of SPACE you do business in, a quiet corner or break area to encourage a few moments of meditation, reflection, and refuelling is a must. With so many potential stressors to encounter throughout the workday—from looming deadlines to unexpected calls, meetings, or roadblocks —it’s vital for any place of work to cultivate an oasis of calm.
Studies show that meditation calms the mind, clears our thinking and makes way for new ideas. And research from one of the world’s top business schools found that just 15 minutes of breathing exercises or other mindfulness-based meditation could result in “more rational thinking when making business decisions.” So whether you work from home or at an office, make sure there’s a BREAKSPACE where you and your colleagues can relax and take a breather.~root~>
Recreational activities like reading or playing video games have also been proven to relax and stimulate the mind, encouraging us to think in new ways and make novel connections. And a BREAKSPACE with a few books or a game to play helps build morale and break down the stresses of the day-to-day, no matter where you’re working.
Real estate giant and workplace expert WeWork knows this to be true. Coffee tables at locations around the world are outfitted with games ranging from Chinese Checkers to What Do You Meme? along with stunning arrays of art books and other titles to help workers switch gears for a few minutes and stimulate their creative imaginations. Reading, after all, is a great way to relax—MindLab International at the University of Sussex found that it reduces stress by an incredible 68%—even more than listening to music (61%) or taking a walk (42%).
And when it comes to video games, huge companies like Facebook and Google are known to offer them along with other distractions to keep their hard-working employees sharp in the long term. Short mobile game breaks, especially during the afternoon lull or low-energy moments, have also been found to be a great way to revive the mind.
No BREAKSPACE is complete without an easy cup of coffee within reach. Keep yours fully stocked with the good stuff, along with cups, snacks and other refreshments like some fresh fruit and protein options to keep you and your team fuelled up and raring to go.
But java actually does more than just keep us awake: a study in the Journal of Psychopharmacology found that coffee-drinkers had a more positive view of their co-workers and were more likely to participate in group activities on the job. A pretty great side effect, if you as us. And it’s also been shown to make us smarter, happier, and more energetic. So whether it’s an espresso, latte, tea or other energizing drink, be sure there’s a spot of caffeine nearby to make those sparks start flying.