The chances are that if you’re reading this website, you already love a good cup of tea. Well, we have some excellent news for you then: drinking tea can be very good for you. Not a surprise for most tea drinkers.
There’s plenty of research to indicate that a cup of tea can be both physically and mentally beneficial, especially when coupled with the act of taking a tea break. Not only does it help you to feel better but it can also help you focus more on the task at hand.
Optimum conditions for human concentration include a certain level of relaxation and comfort, regular breaks and hydration. A tea break offers all these things, along with the chance to catch up and network with colleagues or friends.
Caffeine vs. Caffeine-Free Tea
Caffeine has its share of die-hard fans and naysayers, but there is an option for everybody where tea is concerned.
The average cup of English breakfast tea contains about 40-50mg of caffeine per cup. That’s a moderate amount and falls way behind the highly caffeinated, sugary energy drinks we find in vending machines.
It’s enough to give you a gentle boost of energy, but not enough to make you feel jittery and anxious like a strong cup of coffee.
Instead, caffeine works by stimulating the brain, blocking drowsiness and fatigue and giving you a hit of energizing dopamine. That excellent for adding a little lift to your day, helping you to get straight down to business with a clear mind.
Although if you over-do things, you may start feeling wired and confused. If you find that caffeinated tea is a little too much for you, you can drink decaf versions of most teas. Green tea naturally has less caffeine in it than the standard black tea, and you could even switch to a caffeine-free option like rooibos.
Many people find that it still has all the desired effects of black tea, but without the jittery feeling some people experience as a reaction to caffeine.
Take a Break
Superstar poker player and PokerStars Pro team member Daniel Negreanu knows a thing or two about hard work. His rigorous and dedicated training schedule sees him spending hours every day sharpening his technique and honing his gameplay before hitting a big tournament.
His personal goal is to “passionately dedicate [him]self to learning, improving and developing [his] skills while also being financially responsible.”
Working in this way takes a lot of forward thinking and commitment, necessitating frequent breaks in his busy schedule to reflect and reassess. In high-powered, high-pressure professions such as his, a tea break can work wonders for concentration, focus and resilience.
The act of taking a break has been proven to increase productivity, improve alertness and reduce fatigue. It’s a chance to give your eyes, brain and the rest of your body a respite from work. It also makes it easier for you to retain new information, reduces your stress levels and gives you time to reevaluate your goals.
It’s easy to underestimate the importance of taking a break but working for long stretches with no rest means that your mind is more likely to wander, and you end up getting less work done. Even regular five-minute time-outs give you a chance to stretch your legs and temporarily switch your attention to a different task.
Doing so will benefit you tremendously in the long run and stop you from burning out.
One of the most appealing aspects of a cup of tea is the feeling of a warm mug in your hands. In the colder months, the heat from a hot cup triggers happy feelings associated with coziness and safety. Having a warm drink also heats you up from the inside out, helping you to relax tensed muscles, which can cause aches and pains or tension headaches.
When you feel relaxed and pain-free, that is when you will be most productive and find it easiest to concentrate.
The tea break has become so much a part of the modern working culture that it may have been a while since we stood back and examined the effectiveness. If we did, we would no doubt find that its widespread popularity is due to it working.
The adult human brain can only concentrate on one subject for a maximum of 45 minutes before it starts to wander. We can’t help it. It’s what most of our brains are wired to do! Therefore, regular breaks allow you to refocus, and the warm, tasty caffeine hit from a cup of tea gives your brain some extra support to get you firing on all cylinders.
Even further, it’s the perfect opportunity to brainstorm with colleagues or decompress with a group of friends.