The story of a day in the life of an unsuccessful office worker

12:15pm How to take a long lunch break without being noticed

Working excessive hours can cause stress, fatigue and eventually, burnout. 

Accordingly, it’s important to take a long lunch occasionally. 

You have to know how to work the system. My methods are risk free. Here are my tips: 

·        Don’t take a long lunch every day. Save it for the best sunny days, so as not to attract attention. 

·        Leave shortly after twelve and be back before two.  

Regular lunch hours are between twelve and two. Absence outside these hours may arouse suspicion.  

·        Leave at a time when your boss is away from his desk.  

That way, he won’t see you leave or have any idea what time you left. Moreover, it will probably be thirty minutes before he even realizes you have gone.  

·        Create the impression of going to another department. 

If your company occupies more than one floor, you can create the impression that you are following up a work related issue on another floor.  

Do not take your briefcase, jacket or coat. Instead, take a work related file or folder with you.  

Upon leaving your floor, walk briskly and appear to be pre-occupied with your file. Look like you mean business.  

In a similar fashion, reenact the façade of preoccupation with your file upon your return. 

·        Upon returning to your desk, continue the façade of preoccupation with your file.  

Hurry back to your desk, take your seat quickly, have your file open on your desk and start working away madly at the computer.   

If your cubicle is positioned in such a way that no one can see your screen, you need not actually do any real work at this point. You can type away feverishly whilst emailing your friends or playing computer games.  

However, if your cubicle is positioned in such a way that your boss or others can see your screen, you may actually have to do five minutes of real work at this point. 

·        Finally, external meetings provide a wonderful opportunity for long lunches.  Try to schedule your external meetings to start at around eleven o’clock (depending on the expected duration of the meeting). Indicate to your supervisor that you expect to be back at around two o’clock.  

If possible, politely wrap up the meeting or otherwise excuse yourself at about eleven forty-five. This will give you plenty of time for a long lunch before you are expected back at your office. 

Never feel guilty about taking long lunch breaks. Employees who take time out occasionally are less susceptible to burnout and more productive in the long run. 

Your long lunch break is a favor to your employer. You have a responsibility to take it.


  1. December 22nd, 2007 | 7:45 pm

    Ha ha ha! Sweet skills! I have a different method as I am a Bar Attendant, but most time I can take extra is ten minutes.

  2. December 24th, 2007 | 5:05 am

    Hi Iron Pugilist

    Thanks for your comment.

    Any useful tips for other bar attendants?



  3. December 24th, 2007 | 8:43 pm

    On the last five minutes before you go on your break, look for something to do that would require more than five minutes. Everyone will know that you’ve off-setted your break but rarely will they keep track of what time you actually went on your break. Take an extra ten.

  4. December 25th, 2007 | 5:51 pm

    Iron Pugilist,

    This sounds like sound advice for all of us, particularly bar attendants and also particularly for anyone who must take a break according to a set time or schedule.

    If you take your break on schedule, they will expect you back on schedule.



  5. denim recoleat
    January 13th, 2009 | 9:58 pm

    yes i agree

  6. denim recoleat
    January 13th, 2009 | 9:59 pm

    i love it in the bum hole

  7. February 11th, 2011 | 2:32 am

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