A journey of personal development and self-discovery can last a lifetime, but no one who has taken a journey of many years has gone without a break. You are working on yourself in many different ways, but you must give yourself a break at some point. Champions take breaks in their training, and ideally, your breaks are champion-like too.
The breaks described in this article will help you get away from your personal development only to come back stronger.
#1: Small Breaks During Long Projects
You may work out every day, and your workouts may be quite effective. You may have a plan for losing weight you wish to lose or reaching certain goals, but you must have a plan for breaks. Even the most serious weightlifters in the world take breaks during their workouts. Your body needs an opportunity to recover from the work you have done.
Mental work is no different than physical work. Mental work you do for school or personal edification requires frequent breaks. You cannot read all the classics in one sitting, and you cannot complete all the work for a course in one day. You must work diligently before a short break. You must take frequent breaks, and you must stop yourself when you begin to feel sick or tired.
Pushing yourself to the limit is not as healthy as you might believe. Your body and mind will break down if you push too hard. Small breaks during long projects help you pull yourself together before continuing.
#2: Long Breaks
Taking a break of a few days or a week from a certain project may be the only way to move forward. You may have worked on the same thing for months on end, and it is wise to take a day or two off to get some fresh air. Your body and mind need a rest from a task that is repeated on a daily basis. You will come back to such a task having improved even during the break. Your mind has just enough time to recover from all the learning you have done.
#3: Taking A Breather
Performing an especially difficult task can take a lot out of you. A short breather is often the best way to get the task done. Weightlifters take a large breath before they lift something that weighs several times more than they do. A long jumper takes a deep breath before setting off for the pit, and rifleman takes a deep breath before firing the decisive shot. You must take a moment to breathe and recover your sense. That moment of clarity is more than enough to complete the task beautifully.
Taking breaks is seen as a sign of weakness by many in the self help movement, but breaks are a sign of strength. You are loving your body when you take breaks, and you must get past the notion that weaklings take breaks. Weakness is not measured via inactivity.
Intensity is a wonderful characteristic that will serve you well in many activities and endeavors throughout your life. Intensity is not something that can be maintained for long periods of time with a loss of focus. Take a breath, take a long break or take frequent small breaks to help yourself focus. Your path to self-discovery cannot be derailed by one break, and you may find the break has improved your chances of staying on the right path.