Traditional wisdom says that self-care is a weekend and evening thing only. They say it’s a state of mind that’s incompatible with work. The two should never be mixed. There is nothing more wrong than that. Why should you suspend your well-being during the over forty hours you spend at work every week? Why does self-care has to wait till weekend before they come in?
Your career is not supposed to run you down, but rather to further your well-being, both personally and professionally. Here are simple ways to make sure you’re taking good care of yourself during your work week.
1. Be Proactive
Productivity does not mean obsessiveness to work. It actually is a way to make your career more profitable, and your life easier. A proactive person does not need to be pushed or forced to do what he/she is supposed to do at work. And that’s one less person breathing down your neck.
A proactive person is organized, prepared, problem solving, etc, if you are all these, it means you’re working in a state of serene competence. You don’t need to have your boss or co-workers stressing you, as long as you do what you’re supposed to do per time. You may not know it, but you’re taking care of your mind by doing this.
2. Don’t take your lunch hour lightly
Lunch hour is not necessarily about the food. It is your personal hour to pause the mental activity of the workday. If yours is to eat with friends, then do that, it restores your sanity from all the works during the day. If you’d rather go to the gym or go to the shower, have a coffee, meditate, whatever works for you, go for it.
3. Your working area should be healthy for you
You shouldn’t hesitate to ask for things that makes you stay healthy and happy while you work. If fitness is crucial to you, request for a standing desk. And if diet affects your mood, then don’t take junk that will leave you useless for the rest of the day. Also, if you can’t handle the fluorescent light, request or get a warm-light lamp for your desk.
The point is to get things that make you comfortable and healthy at work. You have a right to these things, depending on your work environment and your boss, but there’s no harm in asking.
4. Ask questions from your boss
Yes! You saw that right. It is a lot of stress for you when you don’t know what your boss thinks or wants. You don’t know where you stand, how you’re doing, where you need to improve. Why not save yourself the stress and ask your boss?
Instead of wondering and trying to overwork yourself, put some time on your boss’ schedule to get a feedback on how you’re fairing. This gets you out of the dark and into a place where you can improve and grow, without stress.
5. Build good relationships with your co-workers
It’s always a little problematic to balance work and friendships, but that is not an excuse not to know the people you work with on a personal level. We are social entities, and studies have shown that good relationships are essential to health and longevity.
Take some minutes in the morning to say, ‘hello’ to your co-workers, and another 20-30 in the afternoon to eat with them or grab a coffee. Also, drop by their places during weekends to have time together. Hang out with them as often as you can. It makes your days at work more fulfilling.
Taking care of yourself should not be on hold Monday through Friday. It should be a daily thing, and the fact that you don’t have to go overboard about it makes it more fun. Rebalance your career life with some care and watch your work life improve tremendously.