According to this article in the New York Times, new research indicates “play and down time may be as important to a child’s academic experience as reading, science and math, and that regular recess, fitness or nature time can influence behavior, concentration and even grades.”
(photo by pimpexposure, courtesy of Creative Commons)
I’m here to say it’s important to an adult’s career experience, as well. I recently took a day off work to spend time away from a stressful project, and I also spent two full days completely offline. No e-mail. No blogging. No Facebook. That’s unusual for me! Not twittering for four days was something I didn’t even do when traveling northern Italy last summer.
And, yet, unlike Steve Jobs, no one seemed to really notice. The world did not stop turning, the work project did not fail and I returned to the office much rejuvenated. Just stepping away for a small amount of time enabled me to re-engage in my work with a much more level head and lower stress level.
So, for all of us who do not have the jobs 40 percent of Slashdot readers apparently have that require fewer than 4-5 hours a day of work, let’s remember to take recess occassionally ourselves. Reconnect with our families or with nature or with our faith or simply with our internal compass.
It will do not only ourselves, but also our coworkers and our employers some good.