Most office workers have done it before: scarf down food at their desks because they're too busy to stop working. Fast Company suggests, however, that this might be the most useful time in your day, and eating lunch at your desk could make you less productive overall.
Picture: Martijn van Exel/Flickr
According to author Bob Pozen, you should think of the function that lunch breaks serve and what you could gain from stepping away from your desk. For example:
You could eat alone -- perhaps away from a screen. Pozen says that since you’ll sometimes have a very full day, eating alone can help you restore your personal resources. And don’t pull out your phone: An absence of stimulation encourages associative or integrative thought, spurring your creativity. As well, if you have an idea that you’re working on in your head, eating alone allows you to continue uninterrupted
Taking a short nap, a walk or gym break could also help you avoid the afternoon energy slump.
Some people think lunch breaks are overrated, but it's worth considering whether the time you save by eating lunch at your desk actually costs you more in overall productivity. The good news is there are plenty of ways to use your lunch breaks effectively.
If You Think You're Productive During Lunch, Think Again [Fast Company via Inc]