Stop eating lunch at your work desk!
The story below was first published on Apprentice Asia winner Jonathan Yabut’s Facebook, where he often posts his day-to-day reflections on working life and the daily grind.
I have issues with people who complain that they have too much work that they have to eat lunch at their desks. And they say this with a bravado as if to tell us they've been "working hard." Sometimes, it is inevitable, but I don’t think that is necessary everyday.
I always tell my work colleagues that food eaten in front of the computer screen is not as delicious as what you eat outside the office. (READ: 10 New Year’s office resolutions to think about this 2016)
Lunch time is a sacred time that you should use for re-energizing and rebooting your brain for work in the afternoon. Work isn't like a sprint, it's a marathon.
Science tells us that the more efficient workers are those who take a scheduled pace – those who finish a task by steps and layers and then take a deliberate break time before they start working again (on average, experiments show that they work with no distractions for 1-2 hours and then they take a break for 15-20 minutes).
They repeat this as a habit. This is different versus having a one-time, big-time burst of energy in the morning, and then you collapse or get tired in the afternoon and end up doing nothing at all.
From experience, I think there are more benefits to eating outside your cubicle:
Unless you bring your own food at home, you’re likely to choose healthier food (versus the convenient fast food that you get delivered – a usual habit of people with "no time")
Your networking opportunity increases by sharing a seat with someone at the cafeteria (especially with strangers or co-workers you rarely see but work with remotely via e-mails or calls)
Eating is arguably the best way to bond personally and professionally with your teammates. If you don't trust me on this, here's a beautiful article from Harvard Business Review that proves eating together improves group performance.
So stop bragging that you're too busy to eat lunch outside. Everybody IS busy, it's not just you. Assess if it’s possible that you may be inefficient with your own workload.
Once in a while, share a meal with your work colleagues. Unwind and rest your brain. Reboot it with non-work related thoughts so you can get a fresher and cleaner canvas to work on later.
So please, as you break for lunch, try to get out and walk to the cafeteria. Also, don't forget to share that big scoop of ice cream or leche flan with a colleague while you're at it. – Rappler.com
Jonathan Yabut is the proud Filipino winner of the hit Asian reality TV show, The Apprentice Asia and is currently based in Kuala Lumpur as the managing director of his own marketing consultancy firm, The JY Ventures & Consultancy. Jonathan is Asia’s leading motivational speaker on topics involving leadership, development of Gen Y workers, and career management for Fortune 500 companies. He is also the author of Southeast Asia’s 2015 best-selling motivational book, From Grit to Great. Visit his official Facebook Fanpage here.