In this world, it is very important to give yourself a break. Not to over-fret, over-judge, or worry about things that have turned out a certain way. Not to worry if you had trouble getting to work today, or to think a current problem is the end of the world.
Many of us are crying out for this break. It’s why we feel that we could sometimes sleep all day when worrying about a certain problem. It’s why we can be our own harshest critic. But the truth is, unless you give yourself a break, it might never be given to you. Does this mean simply going AWOL from your job and taking a three week break in Greece? As fantastic as that sounds, no, we wouldn’t recommend doing that.
A personal break is much more a kind of inner fortress you can retreat to when things get rough, or when you need to think about a problem a little more outside of your normal means of reactive thinking. Our aim is to help you gain this break with as much care and possibility as you can:
Don’t Let Someone Dress You Down
Perhaps a friend is constructively criticizing your behavior as of late. Perhaps you haven’t called them as you promised to, and this has caused some tension. That should be listened to, and appreciated. It’s a sign of good friendship for someone to express their concern and fill you in on your blind spots. But what if someone dresses you down at work? What if someone decides to criticize your actions despite knowing nothing of your intent and simply using you as a conduit to release some anger?
Should you let that affect you? Well, often we do. This is because it often happens so rarely in modern life that we think we must have done something to deserve it. But have you actually? Should you actually listen to that? Or is their criticism unfounded, without anything productive to be gained from it? Simply bringing yourself away from that person after a dismissive word in self-defense is important. If you let someone you don’t know how to do this, then what kind of president does that set for your self-talk? We shudder to think.
Stop Limiting Yourself
Stop limiting yourself for artificial reasons. Perhaps you wish to read that racy romance novel on your train commute, but you’re afraid of what people will think. Well, who cares? It doesn’t give them a right to judge you. Perhaps you’ve been putting off a cosmetic dentist visit or the desire to get work done because you’re afraid of what a friend might say. But if it increases your confidence, why not just go for it? It could be something you truly benefit from. We can often place all kinds of borders around ourselves. ‘Oh, I don’t drink beer,’ or ‘oh, I only drink black coffee.’ Why? Sometimes, going outside of your boundaries can be healthy.
Just breathe. It’s really that simple. Just take five minutes to do nothing but breathe and focus on your breathing. This will melt your stress away, particularly if you regularly practice it. And sometimes, that’s all the break you need.
With this advice, we hope you can better give yourself that break you are due.