You spend most of your time at work, so feeling physically and mentally good is important. Even if you don't have control over everything that happens at your job, there are a number of things you can do to feel good every day.
Taking care of your mental health
Whether in the office or working from home, taking care of your mental health is vital. Setting limits with your manager and expressing your needs is important in both cases.
A break between home and work
Separating the lines between work and leisure or family time is sometimes difficult for those working from home or in hybrid mode. You must know how to "disconnect” and give yourself time off to be more effective during work. Scheduling automated absence messages can be a great way to let people know you're unavailable. Don't hesitate to explore your email or instant messaging application options.
Reserve office hours for work, and avoid being distracted by domestic chores. Setting up a schedule can help you respect the break between the two. Priority management can also help reduce stress and anxiety.
Communicating and socializing
Social connections are healthy and play a pivotal role in your well-being at work. Frequent group meetings are recommended to maintain a sense of belonging, even if they are not face-to-face. Coffee-machine conversations help to strengthen bonds within the team; they can also take place virtually.
A hybrid work model combining office days with telecommuting may be an option to counteract isolation. If this is possible, discuss it with your manager.
Team activities outside work can foster a sense of belonging. Many affordable options are available. It doesn't have to be complicated; you just need an opportunity to get together more casually. Don't hesitate to ocassionally participate in formal or informal social events with your colleagues.
Taking time off
Whether you're taking a well-deserved break for a few minutes or going on vacation, you are allowed! The best person to respect time off is you. Let's face it: at work, there's always something to do. So don't hesitate to plan some downtime and me-time!
For many, happiness at work also means feeling fulfilled or useful. If the company's mission doesn't meet your needs, focus on yourself. Set realistic goals for your professional development every year. Keep learning and pushing your limits. Talk to your manager about your goals and suggest training that interest you. Be proud of yourself.
Listen to yourself
Stress is good in small doses. It can harm your mental and physical health if it builds up over too long.
It's important to stay on top of what may be causing this stress and to find solutions. There are many causes of job-related stress: work overload, inadequate tasks, job insecurity, lack of advancement, strained relationships, a difficult work environment, lack of communication, etc.
Of course, if you're feeling overwhelmed and the pressure is mounting, don't hesitate to ask your colleagues for help. Delegating or sharing tasks can help spread the pressure more evenly.
If you still feel constant stress, talk to a healthcare professional. Employees often have access to employee assistance programs. These programs are there to give a helping hand. Take advantage of the resources your company offers.
If your employer doesn't provide any programs and your family doctor is difficult to reach, you can call 811.
Don't forget physical health
Physical health is also important, whether in the office, at home or on the road. A healthy lifestyle has a direct impact on your daily work life.
Sleep is not for the weak
Sleep hygiene helps both the body and the mind. Sleeping well makes you more efficient at work and have more energy. For more information on sleep hygiene, consult our guide PSST! - Looking to sleep better.
When telecommuting, proximity to the pantry can lead to overeating. Pretending you're in the office and making yourself a lunchbox is a good idea. That way, there's no need to go overboard.
Similarly, a boxed lunch is also an option if you work on the road. You'll be less tempted by fast food and drive-throughs. You'll make better food choices.
You need to find time to get moving at the office or home. Here are a few tips to increase the number of calories you burn during the day:
- At the office, take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Take breaks and, if possible, go for a walk for a few minutes.
- Take advantage of your mealtimes to schedule in some physical activity. It doesn't have to be strenuous. Walking will do the trick!
- Get up to see a colleague instead of using a messaging application. There's no better way to stretch your legs and stay efficient at the same time.
- Put your activity slots in a calendar, so you'll have "no choice" but to go.
- If you're commuting to the office, why leave the car behind? Opt for walking, cycling or even a scooter. You'll get some fresh air and get moving, killing two birds with one stone!
Your workspace has an impact on your daily life. You spend most of your time there—you must feel comfortable.
It starts, of course, with the equipment. Having a good working position can prevent many problems. Poor posture can cause significant pain. That's why ensuring that your workstation complies with ergonomic principles is key. Don't hesitate to ask for all the equipment you need for optimal comfort in the office or telecommuting. Whether it's a second screen, an adjustable chair or a simple footrest, all requests are welcome if they are justified.
If space allows, ensure you have a dedicated workspace. This will make it easier for you to settle down comfortably work effectively and make it easier to "switch off" when the day is over. Certainly, with an office in the bedroom, sleep could take a hit.
On the other hand, in the long run, a cluttered, small and/or poorly lit space could make your days more tedious. Keep your workspace clean and inspiring.
And when you come back from vacation?
Vacations are nice, but they often mean a lot of work when you return. You sometimes wonder if it was really so relaxing afterwards. There are a few things you can do to minimize this boomerang effect.
- Be sure to set up an automatic out-of-office message in your mailbox.
- Block your calendar for a few hours when you return to give yourself time to get back on your feet.
- Meet with the people who were present during your absence to find out what happened.