You work hard but you don’t want to get burned out.
You are doing some things outside the work day to improve your well-being – like getting your sleep, exercising, and watching your diet. But what can you do while you are at work to improve your well-being?
A recent article in Harvard Business Review provides six, science-based suggestions for improving your well-being at work:
1. Check in With Yourself Daily. You are very busy. Call a time-out every day. Simply ask yourself “How am I doing today?” and give yourself a chance to check in. This increased awareness can give you more control over your day.
2. Take Short, Quality Breaks. The human brain needs a break every 90 to 120 minutes. Find ways to get quick breaks. I know one executive who schedules all meetings for 50 minutes, rather than an hour to have the chance for some breaks.
3. Focus on What You Can Control. Accept that there are some things that you cannot control and don’t ruminate over those. Put your energy into those things you can influence.
4. Prioritize Micro-Connections With Colleagues. Before or after a meeting, take a few minutes to check in socially with co-workers. Don’t just rush into the agenda or run away after the meeting. We need to remember that we are working with humans and we all need social connections.
5. Practice Gratitude. Recent research is demonstrating the power of practicing gratitude on a daily basis. If you can do this during the work day then it will counter your brain’s “fight or flight” negativity bias. Learn more about the power of gratitude here.
6. Don’t Take Work Home. Even if you are working from home, you need to turn it OFF at some point. Practice “active rest” outside of work. Put time into things like reading, gardening, or starting a new hobby.
These little things at work can add up and make a real difference for your well-being. Definitely continue to focus on important issues like exercise and diet outside of work. But adding these practices to your work day can give you a positive boost.
*Ideas for this blog taken from: Kogan, N. “6 Science-Backed Ways to Improve Your Well-Being at Work,” Harvard Business Review online, July 7, 2023.