Take a Break from Work - Plan Time for Renewal

Take a Break from Work

Plan to take a break from work. 

You are not a human doing, you are a human being. And that means you need time for renewal and recovery of energy.

Since everyone is different you may not need as much down time as someone else, but you do need it.

Get away. Change activities. Change pace.  Taking a long weekend or holiday is a good capacity building strategy for those who want to be at their best. 

Effective people know that making a change relaxes and increases a sense of well-being. This creates a climate where new insights can pop into your mind. That fresh thinking can be important to the very project you were working on.

Renewal is not slacking and laziness. It is good management of your most important resource … you.

"You probably got that wonderful idea not when you were struggling to find an answer, but precisely when you weren't trying to think about it. Perhaps you were on the running path, in the shower, at a symphony concert, reading the funnies, or driving home from work. For many people, their great 'Aha!' moments of insight come when they wake up in the middle of the night."

Ann McGee-Cooper, You Don't Have to Come Home Exhausted

Five Days of Coaching to Help YouTake a Break from Work


What is your practical, on the ground, operating truth about work and relaxation?  Can you relax or are you always working?  Do you know how to pause?  Think seriously about this and commit to making needed changes to take advantage of renewal time and the good it will do you.

The Coach asks:

  • Take some time to really think about your beliefs around work and taking a break from work. What do you REALLY believe? What events have formed your thinking around this? How well can you pause or relax? What do you associate taking a break with?
  • What did you discover about yourself and your default behavior toward working and not working? 
  • What do you believe others think about you if you take a day off or go on a holiday? How much does this concern you ... or not? 
  • Taking a planned break from work for renewal, refreshing and recharging is recommended. How serious are you about taking advantage of this time? 


Today, think about how you can build renewal into your life. Renewal is doing something entirely different from work. It's about a change of thinking and action that makes you feel good and recharged. Maybe you always wanted to begin a hobby. Try it. Maybe you used to enjoy skiing. Start again.

The Coach asks:

  • Intensity, rest, intensity rest. This is God's pattern for our well-being. It's not about stopping and you'll end up being a sluggard. It's about building rhythm into your work life. What about this makes good common sense to you? 
  • How can you build renewal into your routine in a way that is sustainable and life-giving? List a number of possibilities. It doesn't mean you have to try do them all, but it does mean you have a lot of options at the ready. 
  • Think about how you DO feel when you have gotten away from work for an hour, a day, a week, longer? How has it energized you for your return? What has it done from your focus and clarity of thinking? 
  • What WILL you commit to try? 


If renewal is good management of your most valuable resource – you – imagine what would happen if renewal was encouraged company wide. Encourage no-work weekends and holidays.

The Coach asks:

  • What kind of a difference can you make to people's well-being in your company or organization? 
  • What would you need to do to start? 
  • What do you suppose might be the results of such a caring for people? 
  • In what ways are you, your most valuable resource? 


Some of your best ideas will come while engaging in renewal. Be ready for them.  Make sure to bring along something to record your thoughts.  Not thinking about work may occasionally result in some of your biggest breakthroughs.

The Coach asks:

  • Reflect back on the ideas, decisions and breakthroughs you had while "not working on them." What's your testimony to the power of "while doing something else," or "while not thinking about work (the situation, the problem, the opportunity) at all?" What happened "all of the sudden?" 
  • How prepared are you to capture that fresh insight, that comes at the most unexpected moment? How could you be better prepared? 
  • In your own words, what's the hidden or subtle connection between renewal and work?
  • Where is your best place to take a break from work? If you have only a short amount of time? If you have a longer period of time? What is it about that place that is significant? 


Plan for some fun, relaxing down time.  Put it on your calendar.  Do it.  Enjoy the time alone with those you love, and be conscious of enjoying the moment.

The Coach asks:

  • How can you have all out fun? 
  • Sometimes it's easy to be "living in the future." How can you remain in the moment, really entering into and enjoying what is present.
  • What's the best descriptive term to put on your calendar to remind you this isn't time "off?" It's ...
  • How do those you love contribute to your renewal? What else could enhance that even more? How could you start? 

Spiritual Reflection for Christian Leaders

Gary Wood Christian Executive Leadership Coach

As a Christian Executive Leadership Coach I encourage Christian leaders to reflect on God's Word to add to their wisdom.

  • Lk 9:10  When the apostles returned, they reported to Jesus what they had done. Then he took them with him and they withdrew by themselves to a town called Behsaida, but the crowds learned about it and followed him. 
  • Mt 11:28 - 30  Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
  • 1 Sam 30:3 - 8  But David found strength in the Lord his God. 
  • Ps 23:1 - 3  The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guide me along the right paths for his name's sake. 
  • Gen 2:2  By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. 

If you are a leader, executive, or senior level professional looking to work with a Christian Executive Coach, I invite you to connect with me here.

If appropriate, we can meet by phone or Zoom to discuss your situation.

Record Your Progress

This is your opportunity to track your progress. Start by asking yourself how important this practice is to you? Record the importance as - not at all, somewhat, fairly, highly or extremely. 

Now next to it ask yourself how well you carry out this practice. Record your performance as - very poor, poor, okay, good or very good. 

Importance Performance Check

The things we track, we pay attention to. Across time, come back and record your new results. You will find that as you are intentional about making improvements, you will bump your "score" up higher. 

This is significant. Don't miss the opportunity to acknowledge your success, and use it as a springboard for making even further gain. 


I used to regularly walk in a nature reserve about a 12 minute drive from my office. Sometimes my walks would be what I called "walk and work." I used a recorder to capture my thoughts, and then transcribed later. In this way I got a lot of writing done that was important to me.

I didn't set out to record. It simply came while I enjoyed my hike and got some needed exercise. My brain was relaxed. I wasn't thinking about work. I was just enjoying God's creation .. and the ideas began to flow. I kept my recorder handy, just in case.

You might say I planned time for renewal and got a great bonus of writing results to go along with it. My point? Take a break from work. Take a hike. Or something! Just enjoy yourself, and the benefits will become apparent.  

Contact me here             Privacy Policy

© G.E.Wood and Associates. All Rights Reserved in all media.

G.E. Wood and Associates is an international coaching firm registered in Ontario, Canada
142 Pratt Crescent, Gravenhurst, Ontario, Canada, P1P 1P5