Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Gary Burns

Second Advisor

Keiron Hylton

Third Advisor

Patrick Converse

Fourth Advisor

Lisa Steelman


Taking breaks at work can provide beneficial well-being and workplace outcomes through on-the-job recovery experiences, yet research suggests there may be specific break characteristics or individual differences influencing break effectiveness. In order to further elucidate the mechanisms contributing to the effectiveness of breaks during work hours, the present study examined the role interruptions to work breaks play in the relationship between work breaks and both recovery experiences and outcomes. Using an experience-sampling methodology, participants recorded three break experiences while at work. Results show work breaks predict a reduction in negative affect and that interruptions to these work breaks weaken this relationship. Moreover, results revealed the role of other break characteristics (i.e., preferred, effortful, and work-related break activities) in the recovery process (i.e., recovery experiences of psychological detachment, control, and relaxation) and subsequent outcomes (i.e., negative affect).


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