You’ve Got Meal: Stepping away from email for lunch

September 22, 2017

PR often feels like a game of email ping pong. Ideas are shared, tasks completed, reports delivered. Internal emails, client emails, newsletters, coordinating with reporters, maybe the occasional email from your mom.

The constant flow of email makes focusing on the completion of tasks difficult at times. Between email and instant messaging, it’s easy to get distracted and write a quick reply, but this usually affects the tasks that actually need to get done.

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

 

But sometimes taking a step back to breath and enjoy some time without eyes on screen is the most pressing task. Can we get a time tracking category “for your health?”

For about three years, I never saw anyone in the Denver office take a “real” lunch break. People would run to grab food, but would always bring it back to their desks and eat with their face smashed against their screens. And even when someone was out for a quick 15-minute food run, you could still count on them to respond to a Skype or email while they were waiting in line.

With the move to the new office, the Denver team has been taking more time away from the desk to eat with teammates in the kitchen, outside in the courtyard and the occasional “for here” food outing – aka getting a burrito in a basket, not a bag.

Taking that window of time to disconnect from your to-do list is a great way to maximize productivity for the rest of day. Taking even a 15 to 20-minute break is a proven way to increase concentration and energy levels throughout the day.

And taking a break to eat something healthy is even better. Barokas Communications has recently started up a monthly Iron Chef competition where the office will come together to create a small, healthy dish for the office to share. We’re also doing a monthly walking lunch to encourage employees to take a step outside for teambuilding experience that involves exploring our local food joints and a bit of exercise – another task that will help motivation during the latter-half of the day.

Research shows that 65 percent of Americans tend to eat lunch at their desk. Let’s take some time to focus on our health (both physically and mentally) and join the 35 percent who are having healthier, more productive days.

-Will

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