What Exactly Is A Break?

I’m sure all of us have encountered this feeling before: one that makes us go, “Damn it, I need a break!” or “Screw this, I can’t take this anymore, time for me to go on a holiday!”. This usually happens when you’re either having a stressful or uninspiring day or perhaps, when someone else is pushing your limits.

Today, we’re going to look into the question of, “What exactly is a break?”

There are many definitions of the word, “break”. A hiatus, an interval, a pause, an interlude, it’s “taking time away from work or your regular activity” or, alternatively defined as “to stop having a close relationship with something or to change a course of action that you have had for a long time.

Vũng Tàu, Vietnam

A “break” usually can be as short as a good five minutes spent off the desk or taking a walk and stepping out of the office for a breather. But this is entirely dependent on the individual - for some, it can take longer than a day, for others as long as months or even years.

Personally, as a designer and a creative person, a lot of questions comes into my head, especially when I’ve reached a milestone in life. Doing almost the same things you do for close to a decade, you begin to question “What is next for me?” , “Where am I moving ahead in the creative industry?” or “Do I want to be in this position when I am at 50?” And usually, when these questions start to linger in my head, it is the cue for me to go on a “break” and get off my daily routine.

I unwind by taking a long walk, catching a live gig/performance or booking that flight out to somewhere unfamiliar to “clear” my mind. Maybe for a couple of days, weeks, or even more. Perhaps the longest break that I’ve taken by far lasted a couple of months. But taking this “break” doesn’t mean that I stay away from any creative work, it just simply means I keep my mind and heart away from anything related to work.

Stoned Revivals, 2015

When do we know that the “break” we’ve taken is enough? How does one gauge or know that a break is sufficient? For me, it’s when I feel the ease, or “space” to breathe; to take upon new work loads with a clearer mind and with no distractions hindering the task I have at hand.

So exactly when will your break is enough? Well, that’s a question that only you as an individual can genuinely answer.

Do not concentrate too much on asking if your break is enough or not.

Take your time. Be inspired. Open your eyes and try viewing things from a different perspective. Meet new people. Create more conversations.

Most importantly enjoy the well deserved “break” and only then will you know and recognise the best time for you to get back on the grind


And always remember that...

“We are the scriptwriters of our own lives.”

You define your own dramas. You create your own prequels, sequels, climaxes and beginnings. Know yourself. Take control.

awool shahrulnizam (amcasia!)
senior creative executive

creative hustler. the occasional communist.


amc asia! singapore

18 Jalan Klapa, Singapore 199330

+65 6735 0785