Most of us spend half our waking hours at the workplace, translating into plenty of stress, worry and anxiety over time. According to a survey stress is the top health issue when it comes to employees in Singapore companies. As many as 56% employers named stress as a major issue, followed by “52% for lack of physical activity, 32% for lack of sleep and 24% for obesity”.
To help beat stress and gain more satisfaction from your work, embrace these five simple hacks to stay healthy.
Stand up for your health
Recent research has shown that spending too much time seated puts you at risk for cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes and obesity. Standing uses more muscle and burns more calories. It also improves blood sugar, fats in the blood and lowers cholesterol levels. Studies have also revealed that those who work standing have increased energy and engagement with co-workers.
Make it a habit to work standing up for five minutes in an hour. Try and schedule standing meetings!
Follow some rules
If your work involves staring at a computer all day without any breaks (and whose doesn’t?), try the 20/20/20 rule. Every 20 minutes take 20 seconds and look at something 20 feet away. Doctors swear by this method to reduce eye-strain and redness! Productivity consultants back the two-minute rule to tackle your to-do list: If something can be done in two minutes, does it then and there. Your stress reduces big time as your to-do list shortens!
Meditate and deskercise
We all know that sitting all day doesn’t do much for our health. Apart from standing off and on, sneak in exercise regularly. Try simple exercises and stretches that you can do at your desk to make you feel better. Take a few minutes off and meditate to clear your head and focus better. A recent study by INSEAD in France showed that employees who spent at least 15 minutes practising “mindfulness” meditation were 77% more likely to avoid making bad, and costly, decisions.
Clear the air
A few office environments can trigger occupational allergies, reactions to chemicals in paint, thinners, office furniture, air fresheners or carpets. After a while, these may lead to continuing problems such as headaches and rashes. You can’t change the furnishings and fixed furniture but try keeping your windows open for a while every day. A freshener that smells of oranges can wake you up, reduce stress and improve your mood. Step out from the office for 10 minutes every day for a walk; it could boost your productivity! A 2015 Harvard University study showed that employees in offices with increased ventilation and lower levels of air pollutants performed better.
Snack healthy and regularly
Eating healthy at the workplace is of paramount importance to keep your energy levels high and stay at a healthy weight. Make it a point never to skip breakfast and have small snacks regularly. But no burgers or namkeens; try nuts, fresh fruit, wholemeal cookies, low-fat yogurt or sprouts salad. Drink plenty of water, keep tabs on your caffeine and eat energy-boosting foods such as almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, apricots and green tea!
Apart from these health hacks, make sure you spend enough time on your personal relationships and get the recommended quota of sleep to stay healthy.