Unleash Your Creative Genius

What Constitutes a Productive Break: It Isn’t What You Think

A few days ago, I discussed the importance for ADHD adults and other Creative Geniuses to recognize when it’s productive to take a break . Today, we’ll discuss what constitutes a productive break and a bit of the science behind it.

Why Bother?

Choosing productive, rejuvenating breaks doesn’t only benefit your employer, if you have one; it benefits YOU. If you take a re-energizing break when you need it, you’ll regain your energy so that you’ll have mental and physical energy to finish your work on time but better still, you’ll also have energy left to engage in personal goals and projects and unleash your creative genius.
Many ADHDers work late to make up for a perceived lack of productivity. You work late so you get home late, feeling tired and with little energy left to pursue your own passions. Discovering the best way, the most productive way, for you to take a break is not only altruistic; it serves your needs as well.

What Constitutes a Productive Break?

In modern society, we’re encouraged to “take a break” using external forms of stimulation such as watching TV, surfing the Web or playing video games.

You might even feel that since these activities are stimulating, they’ll give you energy and allow you to bounce back from feeling tired. Unfortunately, they are not only addictive, some of these activities actually totally drain your energy supply and, worse, leave you drained even after you’ve stopped engaging in them.

I know you’ve heard how bad TV and video games are for ADHDers. I don’t want be another nagging voice telling you to “Turn off the TV and go outside!” so let me take it a bit further and explain a bit of the science behind the issue.

Short Course on Brain-Wave Patterns

Your brain produces waves in response to your activities and depending on the activity, your brain waves fit various patterns. Your ability to focus also depends on those brain-wave patterns. Beta brain waves keep you alert and able to focus. Alpha waves indicate that your brain is at rest. Delta waves occur when you are asleep.

Since the aim of a productive break is to rest your brain but then allow it bounce back and regain energy, at the end of a productive break you need to be producing beta brain waves, right?

Now the Studies

Studies using EEG and MEG (to measure your brain wave activity) have shown that when people watch TV, their brain produces Alpha waves; this is why you tend to watch TV to relax… it is relaxing. But here’s what’s crazy-bad for you: when you turn off your TV set, the sense of relaxation ends but your brain remains passive and lacks alertness. In other words, TV “sucks the energy” right out of you.

Video games are no better. Studies that measure brain activity show that video game players show an overall decrease in Beta waves; the more you play video games, the longer Beta wave patterns stay near zero even when you’re no longer playing.

I’m not saying you can never ever watch TV or play video games again. But if you’re taking a break because you want to regain energy so you can unleash your creative genius after your break, those activities are big no-nos.

Conclusion:: Watching TV and playing video games does not allow you to regain the Beta brain wave production you need to feel alert and energized.

Tomorrow, I’ll share 20 ADHD-Friendly Ways to Energize Your Creative Genius Mind.

How Can You Use This Tip Today?

If you’d like to progress in your personal projects and goals by taking full advantage of your creative genius, commit to doing something other than watching TV, playing video games or going on the Web, before your personal development activities.

Related posts:

Be Productive: Take a Break

3 Comments
  1. Linda-
    Good article and I look forward to the follow up. The best recharging method for me is to get up and walk around a bit. I live in an apartment so sometimes I’ll open the window and sit next to it to feel the breeze.

  2. go out and play sports or hang out with friends 🙂

  3. Good article and the science of brain waves is very useful, thanks

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