Lanning refreshed after extended break

Meg Lanning says taking an extended break from cricket was just what she needed but something she never thought she would do as she prepares to lead the Australian women's team again.

Lanning, 30, took time out from the game last year after captaining Australia to Commonwealth Games gold in Birmingham in August, after leading them to every accolade since 2014.

Monday's ODI against Pakistan in Brisbane will be her first match back in charge of the Australian team.

Lanning travelled, worked in a cafe and listened to her own thoughts and feelings in her period of rejuvenation.

"I have learnt a lot over the last six months," said Lanning, speaking at Sunday's launch of the Pakistan series.

"Certainly part of it is how much that talking to people can help you work through what you are thinking about.

"I had a lot of support along the way from a lot of different people and that certainly made it a lot easier, but there is certainly no shame in putting your hand up and saying that you need a bit of a break and you might need some help with that."

Lanning said she came to the conclusion a few months ago that playing cricket was something she wanted to keep doing.

"I've loved the game as long as I've been playing and there is still a fair bit I want to achieve," she said.

"I feel like I have a lot to give the game both from an individual point of view and with the team as well. Just being back around the group yesterday, training and getting back into it has been really exciting.

"I can't wait to get stuck back into it."

Lanning said people faced their own circumstances, and making a decision like she did "can be difficult".

"You never know what people are going through behind the scenes and that is important to recognise. Everybody deals with things in different ways," she said.

"I never thought I would take a break from the game. It is not something I anticipated would happen. For me personally it has been great. I think I really needed it."

After her years in a structured professional sporting environment, Lanning enjoyed her time in the cafe "delivering coffees and cleaning the dishes".

"It just gave me a different perspective on things, just going in and not really knowing what the day is going to look like," she said.

"It could be busy. It could be quiet. Having different conversations with the customers, I found that really cool."

While Lanning said there had been "no timelines" on her return, her timing has been impeccable.

"The T20 World Cup coming up (in February) is a massive tournament and once I decided I was keen to come back and play again, that made a lot sense to play in this (Pakistan) series and get some games under my belt heading into a massive tournament like that," she said.