Because I have a limited amount of child-free work time each week, I want to maximize the ratio of butt-to-chair and finger-to-keyboard efforts. As a result, I barely leave my desk when I am home alone.
This effort to maximize my work time is reminiscent of an old habit from when I was employed full-time in an office that was not attached to my living room: I've started eating at my desk. I microwave leftovers and eat behind my keyboard, barely conscious of the fact that I've lifted and lowered my spoon 17 times before my bowl of lentil stew is empty. Pangs of hunger are gone, but my palate barely remembers the taste. This is a very important reason as to why I NEVER bring a bag of anything to my desk.
I mentioned my working-through-lunch habit to Photographer Friend a couple of weeks back, and she told me that she always takes a full-hour lunch break. My initial thought was that seemed decadent when there is so much to accomplish in such a short amount of time. But the reality is that taking a break boosts productivity.
As a result, I will give this a try. It won't be this week (since I'm trying to pack the house for our move). And it won't be next week (since I'll be trying to get us unpacked in the new house). But I like the idea of a mandatory break. A few minutes to reflect on what I've accomplished. Or maybe I'll use the time to read a book. Or flip through a magazine. Or maybe I'll just stare off into space as I savor my leftovers.