8 Wellness Tips for Better Mental Health at Work
Work hard, play hard.
The early bird gets the worm.
No pain, no gain.
These idioms all promise big rewards if you just put in the work.
And yet, most Americans aren’t getting the reward—we work more hours, have less vacation leave, and are more stressed out than almost any other nation in the world.
So, it might be time to collectively rethink our relationship with work.
Here are 8 wellness tips you can implement today to support your mental health and find balance in your work life.
8 Wellness Tips for Better Mental Health
Each person’s mental health and well-being are different, so this isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. That said, there are many simple and effective wellness tips that you can incorporate into your day that are helpful to most people.
These wellness tips are loosely organized around a day’s schedule. So, let’s walk through a day of wellness!
1. Develop a Morning Routine
A great day starts with a great morning. Developing a morning routine that sets you up for success is an essential part of your overall wellness. Here are two questions to build your routine around:
- What gets you out of bed—physically? Think about the best possible way to wake up. It could be a sunrise alarm clock or your favorite tunes. Gentle stretches, hugging your kids or partner, and dancing in your PJs are all great ways to physically get up and out of bed.
- What gets you out of bed—mentally? Now, think about your mindset. Upon waking, do you immediately grab your phone and scroll through the news? Instead, try to start each day with a quick positive intention or gratitude practice. If you want, meditation or mindfulness practice can also set the tone for the day.
If you want some more ideas to create your ideal morning routine, check out our 12 smart habits to fuel a successful day.
2. Nourish Your Body
Eating a good breakfast should be part of your morning routine. But healthy eating and getting your brain foods in is just one way to support and nourish your body throughout the day.
Some other ways include:
- Movement: Make it a priority to move every day. This can range from gentle stretches to HIIT workouts. Find something you love and make it a priority in your day.
- Dressing for success: Taking a bit of time to get dressed for the day—even if you’re working from home—can give you that extra boost you need.
- Self-care: Whether it’s a skincare routine or lighting a candle, identify simple things that help you feel good throughout the day.
3. Connect With Others
Connection with others is vital for mental health and well-being. If you live alone or work by yourself, it might be harder to do. Here are a few ideas:
- Send a quick text, voice memo, or call to someone you love.
- Schedule a meeting before your lunch break so you have some interaction in the morning.
- Get out of your house to grab your morning coffee or go for a walk to say hello to casual connections like your neighbors or barista.
4. Prioritize Focus in an Intentional Workspace
Once your workday starts, you want to optimize focus and productivity. This allows you to complete the things you need to and then “turn off” from work.
One of the best ways to do this is by creating an intentional workspace. If you’re at home, set up a dedicated area just for work. You need physical separation between working and living space to keep boundaries around work and not let it creep into your off time.
If working from home isn’t the best environment for you, a coworking space offers many options. You can use a coworking membership to get out of the house and into a new setting, or take advantage of a dedicated desk or private office to have your own space. You can customize these and make the space your own, adding whatever you need for focus and concentration.
5. Take Your Breaks
It’s lunchtime and you need to eat. Move away from the desk and take your break! You need a brain break in order to do your best work.
Here are some ideas on how to spend your time:
- Take a walk or get a workout in.
- Go for lunch with a friend or colleague.
- Complete your grocery shopping or other errands.
- Relax with a coffee and a good book.
- Spend time on a hobby, like playing an instrument or something artistic.
6. Manage Your Schedule
For the rest of your work day, manage your schedule in a way where you’re prioritizing what’s most important, not just the urgent tasks that come up.
By focusing on high-impact activities and projects, you will get more fulfillment out of your work and not feel stressed about small things. And if you’re struggling to get through all of your work in a reasonable number of hours, you may need to shift things around. Here are some options:
- Review your workload with your manager or boss.
- Delegate responsibilities to your team.
- Hire a virtual assistant or use virtual office services to help with routine administrative tasks.
7. Do Something You Love
The workday’s done and it’s time to shift gears. Leave work at work and come home to something you love to do, such as:
- Playing games with your family.
- Connecting with friends over dinner.
- Working on your hobbies.
- Starting up a side hustle.
- Volunteering in the community.
- Planning your next vacation.
We all need a Netflix binge night every once in a while, but if it’s all you have the energy for every night, it may be a sign that you’re working too hard.
8. Create a Wind-Down Routine
Bookend your day with an effective wind-down routine. Just as your morning routine starts your day on the right foot, an evening routine can end it the same way.
Here are some things that you might want to include:
- Journal: Putting your thoughts and reflections onto paper is a good way to calm a racing mind and reduce stress.
- Create the right environment: Light a candle, dim the lights, turn on some relaxing music… set a calm environment to get yourself ready to sleep.
- Read: Reading is one of the best all-around activities. It can help you wind down for the evening while boosting your cognition.
- Mind the screens: Most of us have an unhealthy attachment to our screens. Not only can too much social media, news, or TV be negative for your mindset, but the physical screen (blue light) also makes it harder to sleep.
An effective evening routine will help you process the day well and get a good night’s sleep—both of which will set you up for success the rest of the week.
Your personal well-being is the most important thing in your life. Without it, you won’t be effective at work nor will you be able to enjoy your time off work.
Building a life free of stress and overwhelm starts by realizing work is just one part of your whole life. These simple wellness tips let you be effective in your work so that you can enjoy it as well as the other aspects of your life.
If you’re a small business owner or independent professional looking for a more intentional workspace and an inspiring community that helps strengthen your personal well-being, book a tour of Co-Balt today.