With the constant juggle of home, work, and an inkling of a social life, our lives are dictated by our responsibilities. We’re stressed out because there is so much pressure to get it all done; all the time. We tend to overreach on what we can achieve because we have convinced ourselves that adulting means being able to function under all types of pressure without complaint. And who can blame us for not wanting to buckle under pressure? 

We live in a society where a caramel macchiato with an extra shot of espresso is the answer to getting more done.

It’s becoming increasingly difficult to recognize the difference between making excuses and complete and utter exhaustion. We all know that ignoring our obligations isn’t really an option, taking a break to collect yourself could be exactly what you need.

For some reason, we praise each other when we push through trying times.

We view it as a sign of strength that you are able to navigate pitfalls in life without missing a beat. But the opposite, and more healthy option – taking a mental break – is often condemned as a sign of weakness. The truth is that true strength lies in your ability to see yourself as a human being. One that needs to refresh and recharge yourself from time to time. This post is to help you take that time and come out the better for it.

Five signs that it’s time for a mental break

You never feel good

You just experienced the worst week of your life. Not only did you suffer from stress headaches just about every day, but you also were on deadline and really needed to be at your best. It may seem like you find yourself getting sick when it’s the last thing you need.

Why? Because stress takes a toll on your body, which in turn negatively affects your immune system; leaving you vulnerable to illness. The best way to avoid doing damage to your body is to prepare for stressful events as best you can. Take a mini-mental break. Do something that relaxes you. Then, make it a point to stick to your normal workout and sleep schedule and be sure to drink plenty of water.

The 21 Collection - The ultimate affirmation card collection

You’re always emotional

Emotions can be overwhelming, but they’re meant to be felt. Sometimes the best remedy is to let yourself feel the feels. When you give yourself permission to experience your emotions, you free yourself from the stress that comes from trying to tame them.

While it’s beneficial to validate how you feel, it is a concern if you’re constantly experiencing feelings of sadness or defeat. If thinking of going to work tomorrow literally brings you to tears or if you feel paralyzed at the thought of cooking dinner, it’s time to embrace that you need a mental break. Spending time solely dedicated to self-care is essential to being your best self.

Why it’s okay to give yourself permission to feel every emotion, feeling and mood!

You’re stressed about things you cannot control

It’s easy to find yourself getting caught up on things that you can’t control. It’s like being mentally stuck. We beat ourselves up for missing a workout or for missing out on a job opportunity that we took too long to consider… or maybe it’s a failed relationship that you wish would have worked out. Either way, if you allow it, your mind will be overwhelmed with a heaviness that you can’t control.

Constant negative thinking, especially when it’s about something that you are unable to change, is like an attack on your thoughts. You have to give yourself permission to accept that you can’t change the past. It’s not possible. Take a mental break and give your mind the chance to release those thoughts and the resulting stress and you’ll feel much better for it!

don't wait for your happiness - Tiffany Nicole Forever Blog

Self-care is a distant thought

If you’ve gotten so busy that you are skipping meals to finish work or you’re rescheduling your doctor appointments to buy yourself more time to get other things done… then it’s time to evaluate your life. While your obligations are important, you can’t do any of it if you don’t take care of yourself. Your health must be a priority. When you don’t practice self-care regularly you actually cause yourself more stress.

Create a ritual of self-care that includes taking regular mental breaks. When you find yourself going through the motions of life but not really taking care of you, it’s a clear indicator that you need to do better. Always choose to take better care of yourself first… you’ll be more equipped to take care of everything else later.

Secrets of self-care - Tiffany Nicole Forever Blog


You’re exhausted but still can’t get to sleep

The best way to recuperate from being sick is to get a good night’s sleep. But what happens when you can’t get to sleep no matter what you do? It’s one of the most frustrating feelings ever. You’re laying in the bed exhausted wishing you could sleep with a constant flow of thoughts running through your mind. This is a definite sign that you need a mental break. The stress relief you’ll feel will put your mind at ease and leave you relaxed enough to get some sleep.

When’s the last time you took a mental break? How did you know you needed it? How did you feel after?