Top Five Tips for Maintaining Wellbeing at Work

Most people spend five days out of their seven-day week at work, so it’s important to ensure that those five days aren’t just filled with emails and stress. Whilst work may take up more time than play, you can still find ways to maintain balance by working on increasing wellbeing during those five days. Hopefully these tips will help you gain back time and wellbeing outside of work too since you won’t spend Sunday dreading Monday! With most tips, you’ll sadly find that they won’t work magically. You have to actually put them into practise in order to see the change you’d like, but don’t worry if sometimes you mess up as each day is a new day to try again. That alone can be a very empowering reminder.

So, how can we maintain wellbeing at work?

1. Don't skip breaks.

Don’t scroll past! Sometimes, it can feel as though you don’t have the time to take a break because you need to get things done and you can just take one tomorrow right? Wrong. By skipping your break, you are more likely to get into the habit of prioritising work over your wellbeing. Habits have a habit of creeping up on you so be careful. Taking a break can actually help you to feel energised and inspired to get the tasks done on your return, whilst skipping breaks will often eventually lead to burnout. It’s much harder to recover from burnout than it is to pick up where you left off following a break.

Even if you have a lot on, try to remember the importance of taking a break and see it as ‘a small window that I need in order to maintain my wellbeing’.

Oh… and a break doesn’t mean eating lunch at your desk whilst replying to emails. Switch off from work and your future self will thank you for it.

2. Make work friends.

Whether you work from home on site or in an office, it’s important to have people that you can communicate with on a non work related note. Human beings are social animals, even the introverts. An environment that fosters wellbeing often needs to include some positive relationships, even if that’s just one person you really get on with. Take some time to reach out and have a chat, via email, phone call or in person, however your work set up allows.

3. Set realistic goals/a to do list… and say no when you need to.

The key word here is realistic. It can be hard not to get consumed by tasks, especially if your role has a lot of responsibility, but remember, you are human. You can not do everything at once. This may mean that you have to ask for help, or give people later deadlines than they would like which can feel uncomfortable. Get comfortable with feeling uncomfortable, because it is in your best interest to feel uncomfortable saying no rather than set unrealistic goals or a jam packed to do list that you end up feeling defeated by.

3. Check in with a manager/ colleague.

Even managers need check ins to reflect on how they have been getting on. Reflection is important as it allows us to pause and recognise how things have been going. This not only allows us time to re-consider current methods and create changes, but also to remind ourselves of what is going well and feel accomplished.

4. Don’t overlook the small things.

This one sort of embodies all the others, but the little things really matter. Feeling overwhelmed as 5 new emails just came into your already full folder all at once? Move away from the screen, boil the kettle and have a 5 minute moan or natter with your work friend. Feeling lethargic and it’s only 10am? Have a walk around the office or wherever you can and stretch your legs, neck, arms etc. Upset with a colleague? Pull them to the side and let them know, so you can make peace with it and hopefully with them too.

Small things always add up and they are often overlooked in the workplace. If you often overlook this, try adding a line to your to-do list that says something to remind you, for example, ‘what small thing have I done for my wellbeing this morning/ afternoon?’.

No matter what job you do, a significant amount of stress can come from work and recognising this can help to normalise it. Some days will be better than others, but implimenting these tips and working on wellbeing practises can make all the difference.

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