Before you spend another lunch scarfing down food at your desk with your eyes glued to your computer screen, here’s some food for thought.
Lunch breaks can be important opportunities to recharge, find creative inspiration and make business connections, according to many experts. Research suggests that certain lunch activities can make you more productive — and many successful people agree.
Unfortunately, with workplace stress levels on the rise and most Americans doing work-related activities off the clock, many workers feel they don’t have time for lunch. Just 19 percent of workers in the U.S. and Canada take lunch breaks away from their desks on a regular basis, down from 35 percent in 2011, according to a study last year by Right Management, a human-resources consulting firm.
But our bad lunch habits might be making us more stressed, while at the same time making us worse at our jobs.
Here are ten things super successful people do during lunch:
1. They leave their desks. “Staying at your desk is a big no-no in my book,” Michael Kerr, president of Humor at Work, says in an interview with Forbes. “There are more and more reports on the dangers of sitting too long, so even just getting up to walk to another room to eat is important.”
2. They go outside. A walk in the park can help rejuvenate the mind after a morning of hard work. Researchers at the University of Michigan found that subjects with recent exposure to nature performed better on memory and attention tests than those who did not.
3. They exercise. Steve Cooper, editor-in-chief of Hitched Magazine, says he runs during his lunch break every day. “The sweat, the fatigue, the endorphin rush all give me a boost in the afternoon and into the evening,” he writes in a column on Forbes. “It sounds counterintuitive, but after my runs I have more energy for the rest of the day and my mind is again sharp and ready to tackle any task.”
4. They read. “