From Heartbeats to Productivity: How 90 Seconds Can Make a Difference

As modern-day humans, we are always looking for ways to maximize our productivity. From using apps to manage our time better to taking courses on efficiency, we are always searching for the most effective way to get things done. But what if the secret to productivity wasn’t in our technology or our education, but in our own bodies? What if just taking 90 seconds to pause and breathe could make all the difference?

In this article, we will explore the power of the 90-second pause and its potential to increase productivity, decrease stress levels, and improve overall well-being.

The Science Behind the 90-Second Pause

Before diving into the benefits of the 90-second pause, let’s first understand the science behind it. The 90-second pause is based on the idea that when we experience an intense emotion, our body needs 90 seconds to fully process it. Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor, a neuroanatomist, explains, “When a person has a reaction to something in their environment, there’s a 90-second chemical process that happens in the body; after that, any remaining emotional response is just the person choosing to stay in that emotional loop.”

So, what does this mean for productivity? Essentially, it means that taking just 90 seconds to breathe and reset can help us process, let go of, and move on from any negative emotions that may be hindering our productivity.

The Benefits of the 90-Second Pause

Now that we understand the science behind the 90-second pause, let’s explore its benefits.

1. Increased productivity

As mentioned earlier, taking just 90 seconds to pause and breathe can help us process and let go of negative emotions, such as stress, frustration, or anxiety. By doing so, we can approach our work with a clear head and increased focus, ultimately leading to improved productivity.

2. Decreased stress levels

Stress is a common obstacle for many people when it comes to productivity. However, taking a 90-second pause can help decrease stress levels by allowing us to take a step back and focus on our breath rather than our stressors. This, in turn, can help us approach our work with a more relaxed and open mindset.

3. Improved mental and emotional well-being

In addition to increasing productivity and decreasing stress levels, taking a 90-second pause can improve our overall mental and emotional well-being. By giving ourselves a break from the constant stimulation of work, technology, and communication, we allow ourselves to reset and recharge.

How to Take a 90-Second Pause

Now that we understand the benefits of the 90-second pause, how can we incorporate it into our daily routines? Here are three simple steps to taking a 90-second pause:

1. Find a quiet space.

Whether it’s a private room or a quiet corner in your office, find a space where you feel comfortable and undisturbed.

2. Close your eyes and take a deep breath.

Close your eyes, take a deep breath, and focus on your breath. Count to four as you inhale, hold your breath for four seconds, and then exhale for four seconds. Repeat this for 90 seconds.

3. Return to work with a clear mind.

After completing your 90-second pause, take a moment to stretch and then return to your work with a clear mind and increased productivity.


Q: How often should I take a 90-second pause?

A: It’s up to you! Depending on your workload and stress levels, you may want to take a 90-second pause every hour, every few hours, or whenever you feel overwhelmed.

Q: Is the 90-second pause effective for everyone?

A: While the 90-second pause has been shown to be beneficial for many people, everyone’s body and mind are different. It’s important to listen to your own needs and determine what works best for you.

Q: Can I take a 90-second pause in the middle of a work meeting or conversation?

A: It may not be appropriate to take a 90-second pause in the middle of a work meeting or conversation. However, you can take a few deep breaths and focus on your breath before or after the meeting or conversation to help reset and recharge.


In conclusion, the 90-second pause can be a powerful tool for increasing productivity, decreasing stress levels, and improving overall well-being. By taking just a few moments to pause and breathe, we can process and let go of negative emotions, allowing us to approach our work with a clear and focused mindset. Whether you’re a student, a professional, or simply looking to improve your overall well-being, incorporating a 90-second pause into your daily routine may be the key to unlocking your full potential.

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