Tips for Maintaining Physical and Mental Wellbeing at Work

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31 May 2024

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We often think of health as something we manage in our own time. But with most Australians working at least 36 hours a week, is this realistic?

Finding space for mental and physical wellbeing at work not only helps us feel healthier, it also means we bring a better version of ourselves to work every day.

How to Maintain Your Mental Health in the Workplace

When we have poor mental health, we struggle to find a sense of direction. We may also find it difficult to deal with life’s ups and downs or build up the energy to do the activities we want to do. These tips outline a few of the things that you can do to improve your mental health at work:

Incorporate Mindfulness into Your Daily Routine

Mindfulness is a type of meditation that encourages practitioners to be more in the moment, rather than preoccupied with their thoughts. It involves focusing on what is happening and identifying how you’re feeling, both physically and mentally, without judgement. People who regularly practise mindfulness tend to find it easier to connect with others, show compassion, and better manage feelings of anxiety.

Seek Support from Family, Friends or Colleagues

Asking for help when we’re struggling is an important part of good mental health. Often when we’re having a problem, we keep it to ourselves and try to solve it without getting others involved. Sometimes this works, but it can also lead to the problem feeling bigger and bigger as our perspective begins to distort. Seeking support and another point of view can help us contextualise the problem and begin the process of finding a solution.

Take a Break or Do Something You Enjoy

It can be hard to carve time out of your work day to take breaks, but it’s important to give yourself a chance to reset. If you’ve got limited opportunity to take breaks, plan them out to ensure they’re effective for you. Depending on how you relax, a walk around the park or taking short breaks throughout the day to stretch and meditate might be a better use of your break time than sitting down in the lunch room for an hour.

A change of scenery or spending some time on a task you enjoy can also break up your day into more manageable chunks. This requires some planning but can be as simple as spending five minutes in the morning mapping out your tasks to make sure there’s some variation throughout the day, as well as some things to look forward to.

How to Maintain Your Physical Health in the Workplace

1. Eat Nutritional Food and Drink Enough Water

Healthy food is often confused with boring food, but this doesn’t have to be the case. A good way to find balance is to prepare your work meals in advance and include a few small treats to look forward to throughout the day. Generally speaking, this will still be healthier than getting take away food for lunch everyday and will also save you some money. Plenty of water is also crucial, ideally around 2-2.5 litres per day, especially if you’re drinking caffeine. 

2. Make Time for Exercise 

The importance of exercise in maintaining mental and physical fitness cannot be understated. Whether it’s spending 15 minutes each morning walking from the train station to the office or fitting in a gym session during your lunch break, finding ways to fit regular exercise into your daily routine can make a big difference in both your physical and mental health. That’s because fitness activities reduce our adrenaline and cortisol levels, otherwise known as “stress hormones”, and increase our production of endorphins, which are naturally produced chemicals that can elevate our mood. 

Around 30 minutes of exercise at least five days a week is a great goal to aim for, but any exercise will always be better than no exercise. If your workplace offers a Corporate Fitness program, such as yoga, this can be an easy way top integrate regular activity into your work day.

3. Wellbeing in the Workplace 

With a bit of planning, it’s possible to make significant improvements in your mental and physical health at work. At On-site Stress Management, we provide Corporate Wellness services across Australia that are tailored to your office’s needs.

Get in touch today, and we’ll create a plan that’s right for you.  

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