Whether you have been employed for six months, six years, or 26 years, despite all the planned and unexpected changes, one constant remains – you will always have too much work, with not enough time and even fewer resources to get the job done! Although there are many steps your employer could and should take to foster your well-being, there are some small and yet significant changes you can make to decrease your stress, boost your energy and improve your overall quality of work-life.
1. Eat lunch away from your desk at least three days per week. Working through lunch prevents you from having that much needed time to decompress midway through the work day. Eating at your desk or computer facilitates mindless eating, causing you to eat quickly, preventing you from savoring and enjoying your meal, and often does not bode well for effective digestion of your food. Eating in a space other than your office can turn all of that around. When dining with coworkers, enact the rule of not discussing work at lunch after the first 10 minutes. While it is important to make time for much needed venting, prolonged complaints about work issues only serve to zap your energy and leave you more depleted.You’ll be amazed at what you can learn by dining with your colleagues and seeing the lighter side of them as you exchange stories about the weekend, favorite commercials, or their precious pets’ antics! The added bonus is returning to work in a more relaxed, lighter, even buoyant mood!
2. Engage in one random act of kindness per week, preferably anonymous. Giving to others out of the goodness of your heart with no expectations can do wonders for your soul. When you give of yourself to brighten someone else’s day, then both you and the recipient benefit in indescribable ways. I truly believe the Bible’s teaching that “it is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35, NKJV).
3. Put on your sneakers and move at least three times a week! Take advantage of your company’s gym. Or you might choose to walk briskly with a buddy before work, during lunch, or take a 15-20-minute break in the afternoon and walk around the building.You’ll be amazed at how a few minutes of exercise can help to clear your head, give you a fresh perspective and improve your outlook and work efficiency.
4. Challenge yourself and take advantage of your company’s professional development workshops. Too often we bemoan the fact that others are advancing faster than we are yet we fail to show initiative or invest in ourselves when the opportunity arises. Make the commitment and enroll in the classes that interest you. It’s possible you have a love of learning or a sincere desire to perfect your craft. Pursuing your desires in this manner serves to increase your sense of accomplishment and can be a boost to your self-worth.
5. Engage in meditation. Many examples of meditation, relaxation and/or mindfulness strategies can be found on the Internet. Some of them include: progressive muscle relaxation, guided imagery, and deep breathing techniques, just to name a few.Try some of them until you find one that works for you. Meditation serves to clear your thinking, sharpen your focus, boost creativity, and can even lower your blood pressure.
Choose any one of the above techniques and put it into practice for one month and notice what happens to your mood, thoughts, and even your attitude.Then begin adding other tips. Challenge your coworkers to engage in these tips with you. Nothing beats social support when you commit to working on goals.
Dr. Leslie Bessellieu is a certified personal and executive coach, who specializes in helping professionals find more fulfillment in their leadership roles and careers. For more information about her services, visit her website: www.transformationscoach.net contact her by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or call toll-free 877.519.8039