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  • Writer's pictureClaire Hilton

Have You Tried A Pattern Break? - Busy hands bracelet tutorial.

We don't know how long you have been staring at your screen for, whether its your phone, tablet or laptop and for work of pleasure (maybe you don't either!). We do know however that its really easy to get sucked into repeating the same thing over and over again and losing track of time entirely. Scrolling mindlessly though Facebook and not really paying attention to any of the contents (in fact you've seen most of it already) or trawling back through a twitter conversation, just to be nosy (we've all done it) and before you know it its dinner time.

I'm sure we won't be the first to tell you that regular breaks from doing repetitive tasks are a good thing. A pattern break is just that, an opportunity to break out of the current repetitive and often at some point mind-numbing tasks that we find ourselves in. Screen time is a major offender, taking our time and our energy as well as taking its toll on the rest of our body if we aren't sitting straight, or taking care of our hydration and other needs. Its recommended by health and safety initiatives that at least 5 minutes in every hour should be spent away from your computer screen (but probably any screen!) whilst recognising that its also important to change posture regularly, refocus eyes; and doing some simple stretching exercises when you can. This certainly isn't a criticism, well all do it. Especially when our physical movement is limited either circumstantially (in a pandemic) or by our physical or mental capacity.

I'ts not uncommon for us to swap one screen for another screen, from phone to laptop, from laptop to TV - so having and creating a balance where you can recognise how much time you are spending as well as being able to find other things to do is really important. But don't worry - we have a suggestion!!!

We are a big fan of the exercise below and although we know that its a video (at least to begin with) we would recommend this activity to young and old as well as experimenting with materials when you can! It can be done bigger, and smaller by making a bigger or smaller loom and its super simple that once you've got the hang of it you will be away. we have found that this is a great way to rest and distract yourself from technology, you could also use this idea to focus yourself alongside some breathing to really ground yourself and stay calm when things feel a bit overwhelming. Its portable - because you can put it down and pick it up exactly where you left off and easy to follow. Its great for when you are feeling anxious and your hands need something to do or you just need something to put your brain in neutral and relax. The bonus of it is that you end up with something tangible at the end of it you can wear or give away. Don't take our word for it, try it yourself and let us know what you made and how you got on.

Technically speaking a pattern break could be anything, taking time our of your workday to walk around the block or actually stopping to have lunch or meditate or do yoga. Its more helpful and useful if you actually physically make the decision to do these things by either planning them into your day - or setting an alarm or reminder on your devices to prompt you to do something different. It only needs to be for 5 minutes... you may find when you get back to your task that you feel more energised, refreshed and newly focused on what you are trying to achieve, rather than following tangents and being distracted as you can get when you've been doing the same thing for a while.

This method works great with material too - we used t-shirt yarn to make a chunkier style rope necklace/bracelet.

Taking breaks from our repetitive behaviour and tasks is EVEN MORE important now a lot of us are working from home and could actually in a roundabout way make your day more productive and successful. What do you think? Did you know this already? Do you have any handy hints or tips to help support your working day and make sure you are getting regular refresh breaks?

As always if you enjoyed this post, let us know and feel free to share with someone else who may benefit.

Stay safe and be kind to each other Claire

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