Why taking a step back can help you take two steps forward

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Setting aside quality time for yourself may sound counterintuitive when you have a packed schedule, but the benefits are well-established.



We wear many hats in life – parent, child, employee, friend or volunteer. With the demands these roles place on our time, it’s no wonder that some people may find it counterproductive to take a step back from their busy schedule to do something they truly enjoy.

If the above statement describes yourself, you’re not alone. A 2019 survey by Sentosa Development Corporation revealed that 50 per cent of the participants felt stressed at the prospect of doing nothing, while three in 10 actually admitted they did not know how to relax.

Here’s why you need to make the time to truly unwind – for the sake of your mental health and furthering your personal relationships – and some suggestions to get you started on your journey to a more relaxed you.


Talk of work-life balance is now a staple topic, because it has been shown to benefit employers and employees. Breaks have been proven to boost productivity while preventing burnout and high stress. By activating different parts of the brain away from the prefrontal cortex (which helps with analytical thinking), it relieves decision fatigue, aids learning, boosts long-term motivation and even stimulates creativity.

The potential result of not taking that rest can be devastating. Burnout can take a long time to recover from and may result in a prolonged aversion to work. If you are seeing changes such as work cynicism, difficulty in concentrating, sharp mood swings and social withdrawal, you might be at risk and should mitigate it soon with rest.

Start with short breaks watching something light-hearted – animal videos are a good starting point. A Time article suggests five to 10-minute breaks work the best. Next, start drawing boundaries to keep your evenings and weekends work-free (this includes not texting colleagues about work).


A sporting activity is another option. Replacing a cerebral action with one that engages your motor skills gives rest to the former, and the resulting dopamine from exercise is a nice reward as well.

Going to the gym has become popular for this and outlets are available across the island. HomeTeamNS has Fitness Workz gyms that open as early as 7am at every clubhouse, and includes equipment and classes to help you kickstart your fitspo journey. Swimming is another activity that’s available at all clubhouses. It’s low-impact and refreshing, and the infinity pool at the new HomeTeamNS Bedok Reservoir clubhouse offers stunning views of nature.

If you’re with colleagues, why not have a game of badminton? It’s easy to pick up and requires minimal equipment, and the multi-purpose hall at the Balestier clubhouse is a great option for after-work sessions.


Yoga combines the best of mental rest with physical activation and has been shown to lower the resting heart rate, increase endurance, and improve blood oxygenation, combining to deeply relax and rejuvenate the mind and body.

One can ease into the practice at any HomeTeamNS clubhouse. Hatha yoga is one of the earliest forms to be introduced, while Yin Yang alternates working on your connective tissues and joints with muscular strength and stamina. Move up to more dynamic movements with Pilates, or just enjoy a variety of practices with Yoga Inc at the Bedok Reservoir clubhouse.


Singaporeans love a good staycation, and being in a different environment can set a person at ease. Our island offers a plethora of hotels at various price points to suit any budget, but if you’re looking for more space, renting out a villa might be better.

West Villa at Bukit Batok includes kitchens, barbecue pits and even outdoor picnic benches to enjoy a balmy afternoon out on the green. Over at Bedok Reservoir, there’s East Villa – newly-built with waterfront views. Plan a Netflix marathon on the smart TVs, or geek out on gaming consoles that are available in the living rooms. You can also rent mahjong sets, board games and cards.


Spending quality time with your family and loved ones – where everyone is focused on having fun instead of school work or groceries – is a good way to reconnect and recharge.

Splash out with your loved ones at Singapore’s first integrated indoor waterpark, Aqua Adventure which will open soon at HomeTeamNS Bedok Reservoir, or pit yourselves against the obstacles at Action Motion. For a more relaxing option, hit the lanes at SuperBowl or StarBowl at the other three HomeTeamNS clubhouses at Balestier, Bukit Batok, and Khatib.

Do your children dream of becoming singers? Then the Jewel Music Box KTV at the HomeTeamNS-JOM Balestier and Khatib clubhouses offers plenty of fun for the family. Whether scoring some points or hitting those notes, every outing will be made rewarding as you take that well-deserved break.

Find yourself some “me time” to enjoy the value of a good break at HomeTeamNS clubhouses.

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