For the next several weeks, I’m testing out different productivity hacks to see which ones work well for me and which ones do not — and I’m revealing what I learn about productivity as a result.

My first experiment is one I’ve been practicing with for a couple weeks.

Taking 3-hour restorative breaks.

This experiment is straight from the book The 12-Week Work Year by Brian P. Moran. (affiliate link).

When I read this book, much of the wisdom I could really relate to and do believe in strongly and I’m also in implementing the basic idea of the 12-Week Year.

But what really stood out to me, though, was the concept of the 3-hour break to do non-work restorative fun and it had me asking this question:

Does taking breaks help you work harder and smarter — or not?

This has been lacking in my life. Because my “work” is my self-care, I often just sit down and get to writing, planning and crafting for my work in The Abundant Mama Project.

But, this often leaves NO time for myself and other parts of life.

An experiment with taking 3-hour breaks each week in order to be more peacefully productive.

An experiment with taking 3-hour breaks each week in order to be more peacefully productive.

These past two weeks I’ve been testing this concept and I’m going to do it for one more week so that I can truly see if I can sustain this momentum rather than just try it once and be done.

Next week, I’m going to share with you what I learn by taking these 3-hour breaks out of my creative work time of time — and I’ll reveal what it does or doesn’t do for my creative process.

The idea of the 3-hour break is simple.

Do anything you want for 3 hours that isn’t your work. I’m using this time to intentionally choose restorative activities that are authentic to me each week. That might mean a long walk and lunch. It might mean just walking around downtown. It might mean a yoga class and breakfast.

No matter what I choose — my rules are this: no laptop, no planner, no phone calls or checking email and no social media.

Sounds challenging for this work-at-home mom who seems to never have a normal week between sick days and snow days and holidays and errands and life.


In fact, as I consider each 3-hour chunk of time, what my brain is really thinking is …  gosh, I can get a lot done in three hours.

Next week, I’ll report back on what I’ve learned — and what my next experiment will be.