Coffee breaks can take your mind off work for a while and allow you to refresh your brain before diving back into business. Even with the introduction of virtual or hybrid working, coffee breaks still haven’t completely disappeared. Before, you may find yourself chatting with your co-workers in the break room. Now, you can just wander around the house and do whatever you want.
But if your break is short and your work demanding, you may want to keep your mind sharp and alert. One of the best ways to do that (without stressing yourself out) is by playing games and doing some mentally-stimulating activities.
Here are a few activities you can do during coffee breaks to keep your head in the game.
Crosswords are great because they are entertaining and require you to work your brain. If you have never heard of this game, the rule is simple. You’re given a puzzle with multiple empty squares arranged in vertical or horizontal lines. Each line is marked with a number. To the side, you will find clues that correspond with each number (and line). The objective is to solve all the clues and find the best words to fit into every line.
Many newspapers, like the New York Times, still print crosswords on physical papers. You can find booklets filled with hundreds of crossword puzzles for you to solve.
But the best way to play (especially if you work remotely), is via apps. There are plenty of free crossword apps available that you can use during downtime.
If you want to invite your co-workers to play with you, consider making your own crosswords. As the host, you can challenge your co-workers and build relationships with them!
2. Virtual Lunch
Even if you work remotely, you can still enjoy the camaraderie of lunching with your co-workers by hosting a virtual lunch. The event is hosted online through traditional video conferencing software, like Microsoft Teams, Slack, Google Meet, or Zoom. As a result, it’s super simple to set up. It’s not so different from an ordinary virtual meeting, except this time, everyone has food.
You can do anything during a virtual lunch: discuss new clients and projects or chat about the day. Or, if you host a virtual lunch with your managers or mentors, you can also learn and receive feedback about your work.
3. Pub Trivia
A virtual lunch could probably be an awkward and boring affair if you don’t have much to discuss. So, try a pub-style trivia session if you want an activity that can connect you with your co-workers better.
It’s easy to host; just use video conferencing software and make a private room. And you can find lists of hundreds of trivia questions (and answers) to ask people. Aside from being fun, pub-style trivia requires you to work your brain and memory. So, it definitely can keep you awake and alert during slow business days.
4. Work Out
For office workers, one of the greatest problems is sitting still and staring at the screen for hours on end. In the long run, this can massively impact your health. Short workout sessions have been found to improve your mood, productivity, and health. You don’t need to spend twenty or thirty minutes. Just ten or fifteen minutes of your time will do.
You can do a few short workouts, like jumping jacks, push-ups, sit-ups, or burpees. And if your co-workers are amenable, you can invite them to work along with you, too.
5. Tea vs Coffee
Tea vs Coffee is a kind of game where you ask your co-workers questions with two options. For example, you can ask, “For travelling, do you prefer night buses or planes?” Topics can vary, depending on your fancy. Everyone can take turns asking one another.
It’s a great way to discover more about your co-workers and build your relationships with them. Additionally, it passes the time and keeps you engaged.
6. Pet Fashion Show
If you’re working from home, it’s not rare to hear the occasional bark, meow, or hiss from people’s pets. Instead of closing the door or shooing them away, why not show them off? Everyone loves cute, furry animals!
Everyone can take turns displaying their pets on camera, introducing their names, and so on. Once again, it’s a great way to bond and socialize with your co-workers!
You can set up a Bingo game for your team, and everyone can play together. It’s a classic game that anyone can play and can be exhilarating with a good, energetic host. You can take the initiative and set up printed cards for everyone!
8. Guided Meditation
Work is too stressful? You can go through a guided meditation session to calm your mind and improve your mental health. A meditation session can take less than 5 minutes, but it does wonder at reducing your stress and anxiety levels.
Videos of guided meditation can be freely found online. Start with YouTube. There are literally thousands of great, effective videos that you can use.
9. Virtual Karaoke
Are you a singer? If you are, singing to your favourite tunes during coffee breaks can be extremely fun and satisfying. If your co-workers have the same mindset (and possibly even talent), you can invite them to your virtual karaoke sessions.
You can learn more about your co-workers’ music tastes during the session. And if any of them have a hidden singing talent, you’ll know!
You can either spend your coffee breaks doing nothing and watching a random YouTube video, or you can try some of the activities above, which we guarantee will give you (and your co-workers) a good time. Like we said several times throughout the article, most of these games aren’t just entertaining; they can also foster a stronger bond between you and your co-workers.
So, why not give them a shot?