Let’s face it. Occasional stress in the workplace is inevitable, even when you love what you do. However, taking work-related stress home with you can take a toll on your physical and emotional well-being over time.
Finding ways to decompress throughout the day can prevent this from happening. Below are five small steps you can take to be more mindful throughout your work day.
1- Practice breath work
It is amazing what a few deep breaths can do. When you feel overwhelmed at work, pause to focus on your breathing. Deepen your inhale for three seconds, hold, then exhale for three seconds. You can repeat this step as many times as needed.
What is great about breathwork is that you can do it virtually anywhere, even from your desk. It is a quick and effective grounding exercise when faced with stress.
2- Take walking breaks
Movement, especially walking, serves as a great stress reliever. Incorporating walking breaks into your work day can help you release pent-up anxious energy and allow your mind to wander. You do not need to go far to gain the benefits of walking. A short walk to the bathroom or around the parking garage is enough to add value to your day.
3- Separate thoughts from facts
What we tell ourselves about ourselves can have a huge effect on our experiences. For example, these thoughts might pass through your mind if you are feeling stressed at work: “I can’t handle this.” Or, “I’m a failure.” Recognizing that these thoughts are not facts but rather how you are feeling in that moment can help you reframe your mindset into a more neutral space.
4- Don’t bring work into your home
It can be hard to mentally clock out of work once you physically clock out, especially if you work from home. Having a calming routine after work can signal your brain that it is time to shift gears and relax. This might look like doing yoga, cooking a comforting meal, or listening to a light-hearted podcast.
5- Take screen breaks
There is a good chance you spend most of your workday sitting in front of a screen. However, excess screen time has been linked to an array of health issues, from insomnia and weight gain to anxiety and depression. Taking even short screen time breaks throughout your workday to stretch, drink water, or talk to a coworker can make a huge difference to your well-being.
Finding moments for mindfulness throughout your busy workday can significantly benefit your mental space. These five tips can help you work more mindfully and lower your stress levels.