Amanda Gregory, LCPC, EMDR

Deadines, travel, long hours, conflicts with colleagues, changing company culture, and challenging clients: the workplace is often one of the most stressful environments. Practicing self-care at work can help to improve your mood and increase and/or sustain your productivity and job satisfaction. Here are 6 methods to try in order to practice self-care in your workplace:

Socialize

We are social creatures and a simple one-minute interaction can positively change chemicals in our brains. Take time to create a few relationships at work and utilize these relationships in order to receive the emotional and physical benefits of socialization. Workplace relationships do not need to be intimate in order for you to gain the benefits of socialization. They simply need to be civil and engaging. If you do not have access to others during your workday, reach out to loved ones instead. Make sure to know your company’s policies concerning relationships and socialization during company time and avoid participating in relationships you consider to be unrewarding or detrimental.

Eat Strategically

It’s tempting to forgo healthy eating at work due to environmental factors such as time restraints or limited access to healthy food options. Yet, eating unhealthy food, or eating either too much or too little during the workday, can negatively impact your mood and energy level. You can strategize your eating by taking steps to overcome environmental obstacles. Try preparing meals and snacks at home and bring them to work. You can also locate healthy foods that you can purchase daily within the time restraints of your job.

Drink Water

Symmetry Counseling’s staff and clients who use the offices in suite 821 consume about 30 gallons of water every week. This is great! Water helps you stay hydrated which can prevent a variety of unpleasant issues such as headaches, irritability, and fatigue. If you drink caffeine in the morning you should drink even more water, as caffeine can increase your chances of becoming dehydrated.

Get Moving

Staying seated for long periods of time can cause you to feel fatigued, can decrease your ability to focus, and can negatively impact your mood. Take short breaks during your workday in which you walk, stand up, or move around. I know a therapist who walks up and down the stairs in her office building between her appointments. Consider taking a walk around the office or around the block, or do a few yoga poses at or near your workstation.

Laugh

Laughter improves your mood. It’s important to find ways to laugh at work, even if just for a few seconds. You might try talking to a colleague or connecting with a friend who has a terrific sense of humor. You can also take a break and look up media content that often makes you laugh. Whatever it is, try to laugh more at work.

Request Self-Care Workshops

Ask your employer to provide your workplace with self-care workshops. These are opportunities in which experts come into your workplace to provide information which can help you and your colleagues practice self-care. These experts can be yoga instructors, mental health therapists, doctors or nurses, and career coaches to name a few. Ask your human resources department if they’re able to schedule self-care workshops

Symmetry Counseling provides the following professional training workshops:

  • Anxiety in the Workplace: Learn Practical Techniques to Manage Anxiety at Work
  • Empathetically Dealing with Difficult People
  • Mental Health Training for Managers
  • Self-Care for the Frequent Business Traveler
  • Breaking the Stress Vice
  • Continuing Legal Education: Achieving Lawyer Wellbeing
  • Digital Dialogue: How to have Successful Office Relationships in the Digital and Telecommunication World

If you’re interested in scheduling a workshop in your workplace, ask your supervisor or manager to reach out to your human resources department. For more information about how to schedule a professional training workshop, contact Symmetry Counseling.

If you’re struggling to practice self-care at work or in any aspect of your life, you may benefit from participating in therapy. Contact Symmetry Counseling at (312) 578-9990 to schedule an appointment.