How to Make Sure Your Break Doesn’t Turn into Procrastination

How to Make Sure Your Break Doesn’t Turn into Procrastination

SmarterStep by Step

Catch Problems Early 

Grasp Issues Quickly

Take Action Decisively


2 minutes each week to help you execute on your goals

from Jean Moroney

Issue #68
I. How to Make Sure Your Break Doesn’t Turn into Procrastination
II. Tap Your Own Brilliance CD/MP3 Set
III. Recent Posts on the Blog
I. How to Make Sure Your Break Doesn’t Turn into Procrastination

Do you feel like you need a break? Before you leave your desk, take a moment to ask a crucial question: Why do you want a break?

Your reason could be physical. You could be tired, hungry, thirsty, cramped from writing, achy from sitting, etc. If so, it’s clear that you do need a break. It’s also clear what you need to do. End of story.

What if your reason is nebulous, emotional, or doesn’t make sense? What if you need a break because you just feel squirmy? Or you’re suddenly feeling discouraged? Or, you want something to drink, but you just drank a pint of water, and truly, you do not need hydration? In these cases, it’s not obvious why you need a break. And it’s not clear what you should do during the break.

Since you have no clear purpose, you could easily waste a lot of time doing nothing in particular. That’s what happens when you stop work due to an unidentified uneasiness. It’s called procrastination.

So, what should you do? I recommend you delay getting up from your desk, while you take a different kind of break. Take a minute or two to get clearer on why you want a break. (I suggest you do this as “thinking on paper.” See the blog on the topic linked to below.)

Think about your situation. What just happened? Why are you uneasy? Don’t try to talk yourself out of taking a break. Just delay a bit to see if you can figure out what’s pulling you away from your work.

Once you know what’s bothering you, go ahead and take at least a quick stretch break, During your break, mull over the problem you uncovered. When you come back to your desk, you’ll be prepared to deal with it. You have transformed potential procrastination into purposeful action.

If you feel like you need a break, you do. If you identify whyyou need a break, you can use your break time effectively and avoid the trap of procrastination.


II. Tap Your Own Brilliance
In your mental databanks, you have a tremendous amount of experience and expertise that can help you with all your toughest problems, decisions, and people issues. Your background knowledge is uniquely helpful: No one else understands the details of your situation like you do.
There’s just one problem. You can’t always access the information when you need it. That’s why so many issues are difficult, but after you’ve figured them out, they seem obvious. Hindsight is 20:20!

If you want to speed up the process, and learn to access what you already know when you need it, you can learn how in my 4-session course, Tap Your Own Brilliance.

Special Bonus: The CD/MP3 set already comes with 2 bonus CD’s, a handbook, and laminated summary sheet. Order by January 31 and you’ll get an additional recording: “Making the Best Use of Your Mind with Thinking on Paper” (a $29.95 value) included for free.

Read more and purchase it here:

III. Recent Posts on the Blog

You may forward part or all of this newsletter by email, if you include this copyright & contact notice in its entirety:
“Copyright Thinking Directions. All Rights Reserved. To subscribe to the Thinking Directions Occasional Update, email: or visit
Contact me for permission to post to a blog or website.
(c) Jean Moroney
Thinking Directions


Thinking Directions

7935 Airport Pulling Rd N
Naples FL 34109

Tel: 212-972-9495

Jean Moroney

Jean Moroney

About Jean Moroney: Ms. Moroney, President of Thinking Directions, teaches managers, small business owners, and other professionals how to be smarter as they execute on their goals by catching problems early, grasping issues quickly, and taking action decisively. Ms. Moroney received a BS and MS in Electrical Engineering from MIT, and worked as a system engineer, project manager, and software consultant for 10 years. She has an MS in Psychology from Carnegie-Mellon, and has been coaching and speaking on thinking skills since 1998. She has given her all- day flagship course, “Thinking Tactics” all over North America. Her corporate clients include Microsoft,, BB&T, and Canadian Bank Note Company. Thousands of people have benefited from her methods. Find out more at and sign up for her freebie class: Jump Start Your Project:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *