Sharpening the Saw: The Importance of Stepping Back to Step Back In

We know how to get the job done and when to take a well-deserved breather

At Yakkety Yak, we understand engagement—we spend our time helping our clients reach their target audiences and drive meaningful connections. But if you want to be as “on” as we are during office hours, you have to know when to switch “off” for a little while and recharge those batteries.

Today’s social media-driven, smartphone-wielding world makes it so easy to stay connected, which means its more important than ever to actively step away from your work and make sure you’re giving yourself enough time to relax and catch your breath. As our founder and CEO Ashley Logan likes to put it, “sharpening the saw” is key to staying a cut above the rest—and everyone else on the team takes that to heart.


Our phones and laptops make productivity feel effortless sometimes. People love to be able to work on-the-go and get things done from wherever they are. But that freedom needs to be accompanied by boundaries—something as simple as answering a few work emails over the weekend can become a slippery slope when you start seeing other items to knock off your to-do list between Friday and Monday.

This is why it helps to make a clean break from your work life as soon as the end of the day—or week—rolls around. Assuming you have your deadlines under control and you’re not leaving anyone in the lurch, your time outside the office should be yours to enjoy!

“Meeting my deadlines during the week while I’m in the office encourages me to focus on my personal life after hours and on weekends,” says Cat Deubler, YY Graphic Designer.

Actively unwinding

“Relaxing” doesn’t need to mean doing nothing—not that there’s anything wrong with taking quiet time for yourself. Sometimes focusing on hobbies or other skill sets is the perfect way to come back to work fresh and ready to roll. Some members of the Yak Pak like to spend their free time exercising or working on their art or music.

Even something like preparing a meal is an excellent way to change gears at the end of the day. “Cooking is a great release,” says YY’s Vice President of Accounts Warren Legner. “You can be creative, you’re disconnected from devices, and—in general—people leave you alone while you cook!”

Making the time

Life at work is defined by scheduling and calendars, but that doesn’t mean you have to play it by ear when it comes to relaxation. Many of our team members make a conscious effort to set the time aside that they need to refresh themselves. Account Director, Andi Summers, finds it helpful to “schedule a workout like you schedule a meeting.”

“Plan ahead,” says Sean Froelich, Video Producer. “Committing to a schedule allows me to ensure I make proper time for work and personal needs.”

Time spent out of the office also doesn’t always happen in the evening or over the weekend. Sometimes it’s important to block off extra time to take an extended break—whether that means hitting the road for some traveling or sticking around town for some well-deserved rest. Rachel Loutos, YY’s Director of Analytics, tries to plan short road trips or “staycations” a couple of times per year.

Sharpening the saw

Whether you’re diving into a good book or just catching up on household chores, make sure your time out of the office is spent doing the things you find enriching and necessary for living your best life. Your work isn’t going anywhere while you’re away—taking care of yourself has to be a priority in order for you to flourish at the office.

If you’ve just come back from sharpening the saw and want to know how Yakkety Yak can help you strengthen your audience engagement, check out our services.

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