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SKILL #5: STRATEGIC DISENGAGEMENT All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. It also makes him likely to have problems in his personal life, likely to be quite boring, likely to be less effective than his coworkers, and very well likely to maybe die of stress– related illnesses. Humor not only helps Jack’s dullness, but also keeps him healthy, wealthy, and wise. Strategic Disengagement is just corporate terminology for taking a break, relaxing, and recharging the batteries. It helps to prevent burnout, improves concentration, and leads to more productivity in the long– (and often short–) run. Most people strategically disengage at some level already (those two weeks of vacation, or two days over the weekend), but the work day doesn’t have to be over to see the effects. Quick five–minute breaks (see #311) can go a long way in improving your effectiveness all day long. 203

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