How to help clients reset and recover

Studies from the University of Groningen in the Netherlands have found that the benefits of a holiday/ vacation disappear within a week. Jessica Bloom, the scientist who conducted the study, recommends six restorative activities that we can use across the year. Together they from the acronym DRAMMA.

D = distancing yourself from negative or stressful thoughts, known as psychological detachment

R = relaxation – deliberately doing nothing, or being pampered

A = autonomy – taking greater control of your life and work (work-life balance is primarily about this sense of being able to make your own choices)

M = mastery – for example, feeling that you are growing by acquiring new skills; or feeling the benefits of an exercise regime or diet

M = meaning – being involved in activities that give us a wider sense of purpose and of contributing to a larger cause

A = affiliation – the sense that we are connected to other people inside or outside of work.

A recent review of the current state of knowledge about relaxation and mental restoration in New Scientist[1] reports on Bloom’s study alongside others reveals that:

  • People, who think they have more rest than average also scored above average on their sense of well-being
  • Lack of restorative down time correlates with poorer decision-making
  • Downtime aids memory and learning
  • Taking short microbreaks of 10 minutes or so during the working day has major positive impacts on cognitive function and general feeling of well-being.

It’s common for coaches and mentors to ask clients about how they are managing their health outside the workplace. It’s less common to initiate discussion around maintaining well-being within the workday. Simple actions, such as planning in four or five short restorative breaks throughout the day, can make a substantial difference.

[1] Drew, L (2023) Relax to the max, New Scientist, 32-35, 2 September

© David Clutterbuck 2023




Our free content is available to everyone. It includes a limited range of Blogs, Videos and Briefing Papers on key topics and the latest trends. If you want to expand your knowledge even further, or support your development or business with up-to-date information and research, sign up for a FREE TRIAL to gain access to the full content of over 500 blogs, briefing papers and videos within our resource library.

Membership with CCMI offer you will access to all the content within this resource of over 200 blogs, video briefings and more.