Staying healthy at work is all about staying balanced, focused and remembering we are ultimately in control. Don't let stress prevent you from making changes to better yourself, whether at the office or anywhere else.
A lot of us are making active efforts to live healthier lives. One of the biggest challenges we face when making these changes is getting through the work day. Most of us spend a significant amount of our week in an office setting, which can be detrimental to any lifestyle change we are trying to make.
Why is the office such a hard place to be healthy?
Friday morning donuts, spending all day sitting down, and hours on end staring at a screen definitely don't help. But more than anything, the thing that makes us lose grasp of our health goals at work is spending so much time in a stressful environment where we often don't feel in control.
Work is stressful. There are deadlines, schedules and expectations that rarely flow with how we are feeling that day. We need to adapt our needs to the rules and expectations of the office, and this leads to stress and anxiety.
Furthermore, unless you are the CEO of the company (which would be stressful in its own right) you probably have a boss. Having a boss looking over your shoulder can rob you from feeling empowered, motivated, and driven.
If we want to make strides to be healthy, we must combat temptations and create healthier office habits. But how do we do this?
1. Plan Ahead
Staying healthy at work is all about planning ahead. If you make sure to pack a healthy, filling lunch, you will be way less likely to binge on the leftover pizza in the break room. Also, planning little breaks throughout your day to step outside for some fresh air can give you a healthy break to look forward to and keep you on task while you wait.
2. Don't Let Your Stress Snowball
Stress and anxiety are the fastest way to kill any positive lifestyle change. Staying healthy at work means first and foremost staying calm and relaxed. Find relaxation techniques that work for you, whether it be meditation, exercise, or herbal supplements like kava.
Natural relaxation techniques are usually something you can do at your desk and only take a few minutes, but they can improve your entire day and keep you feeling empowered and balanced.
3. Find a Buddy and Hold Each Other Accountable
One of the best ways to stay motivated is to have a friend as a support system. If you find someone else in the office who has similar health goals, you can support each other and make healthy choices together.
It's a lot easier to skip out on the office take-out lunch order or spend your coffee break walking the stairs if you have a friend to do it with you. If you can't find someone in the office, try an online health community where you can share your progress.
Photo by David Calderón