Self-care in the workplace – how to look after yourself at work

Hey guys,

Have you ever heard the phrase “you work to live, you don’t live to work”? Well, while this might be true, it’s also true that during your working life you spend an awful lot of time at work. You might spend at least eight hours a day, five days a week in your office working hard. On top of that, you might have a long commute, which can add hours to your working week. Hours when you might not be at work physically, but that you can do nothing with. 

All this work, while essential, can make self-care hard. It can be hard to take care of yourself, to ease your worries, look after your mental health and give your body what it needs when it feels like you are always working, or travelling to work. While most of us have to work, it doesn’t always leave much time to fit everything else in, which is why it’s essential to learn to practice self-care in the workplace.

Practising self-care while you work can improve your mood and boost your productivity. It can mean that your work is to a higher standard, and it can even enhance the mood of those that work around you. Practising self-care at work can also have a positive effect on your home life. It can mean that when you arrive home, you are ready to relax and enjoy yourself, giving your health and your relationships a welcome boost. But how do you manage to practise self-care when you are busy? Let’s take a look.

Learn to Protect Yourself

Is there anything that you do at work, which might be having a negative impact on your health or wellbeing? While your manager should be looking out for and minimising risks, you can also learn to look after yourself in the workplace. You could take a DSE online course to learn more about how looking at a screen could be hurting you, and what you can do to stop it. 

Keep Moving

Sitting behind a desk all day is bad for your posture, your circulation, your mood, and your fitness levels. It can mean that you get home with an achy back, but that you find it hard to switch off to sleep because while your mind is tired, your body isn’t. So, even when you are busy, get up and stretch, or go for a short walk, regularly. 

Make Lunch a Personal Hour

Your Lunch break doesn’t have to be all about the food. Think of it as a personal hour. Don’t eat at your desk and get straight back to work. Take the full hour, get out of the office and go for a walk, spend some time reading, or meditating. Take this time for yourself each day. 

Learn to Say No

Many of us are stressed out at work because we take too much on. We help everyone else. We say yes to staying late or taking work home. We try to please everyone. Learn how to say no when you need to, and your stress levels will drop.

Use Your Commute

Most people find their commute stressful. But it doesn’t have to be. Use your commute for a bit of self-care. If you are on the bus, use the time to meditate or read. In the car, you could listen to audiobooks or dramas. Instead of getting stressed out or annoyed, use the time for something that you enjoy.

I hope this helps! Let me know if you have any other questions about self-care in the workplace.

Until next time,

Hannah x

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