The Power of Your Lunch Hour

It's a fast paced world we live in and many people work straight through their lunch hour. Obviously everyone has their own circumstances which might prevent them from taking a lunch break but I want to share ways my lunch hour has changed my life and ways it can benefit you professionally and personally!

A couple of years a go I made it a goal to meet with someone new every month. Maybe they were an Instagram friend I had never met in real life, or maybe they were someone I looked up to but never had the opportunity to meet. I've always worked in fairly small companies so now that I've been at IBM over a year, I've set up a few networking lunches with people from different departments I'm interested in learning more about. Not only do I get a deeper insight in to their role and department, but I make a new friend. Every time you have coffee or lunch with someone new you are expanding your network, and I can 100% say knowing the right people when looking for a job makes the biggest impact.

Your lunch hour is a great time to work out! Exercise is a stress reliever and will give you energy to push through the rest of your day! I don't have enough time to take a workout class in my lunch hour, but I usually walk around my work's campus which is pretty large and has lots of sidewalks. If your office has a gym and you enjoy this form of exercise, take advantage of it.

Walking around your office is another opportunity to meet someone new and make it informal. I've set up a few informal walk and talk meetings, and most people prefer to walk around the building vs. sit in a stuffy meeting room.

If you have a dozen things on your to-do list, your lunch hour is the perfect time to cross things off! If you need to get groceries your lunch hour would be a good time to make an online pickup order, or maybe your kid needs red baseball socks (true story) so you run to Academy to grab a pair. Best part is you don't have kids hanging on you so you can get in and out quickly. Don't let the hour fly by while you watch YouTube on your computer, run that errand and mark it off.

I'm lucky enough to work fairly close to Alex so lunch is a great time for us to meet and actually have a non-interrupted conversation sans kids. I also meet with childhood and college friends every once in a while to catch up. Maybe you have a friend you never see anymore now that you have kids, lunch would be a great opportunity to spend time with them.

Photos: Madeline Harper | Location: Woodbine Mansion | Outfit: Theory 

However, know there are some days I want to simply sit at my desk and veg out. I order Lunchdrop which is the best invention ever and get some work done. My advice is to be intentional with your lunch hour and use it to your advantage! Meet someone new, develop your career, stretch your legs, spend quality time with loved ones and check something off your to-do list!

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