Let's talk about self-care at work.
We all know that self -care is important to keeping the work/life balance, well balanced. We all know that self-care is also what prevents burn out and sometimes is what keeps you going. Sometimes though, self-care needs to cross over from at home thing to an at-work thing as well.
Here are 6 ways that you can practice self-care at work.
1. Create Comfort - No matter if you have an office or a cubical or even just a desk, creating comfort in your space is a form of practicing self-care at work. So this means not only decorating your space for the pleasure of others and esthetic purposes, but also for yourself. I literally have a desk plaque that says "You can do this." That's only pointed at me, clients who come into my office can't even say it. Once I had a co-worker ask why I had it aimed at myself instead of others, and my response was "I need this." And I do, its a form of my own personal self-care at work and a way in which I create comfort for myself within my space.
2. Cultivate Relaxation - Add something into your day or your space that has the sole purpose of relaxing you. Be it a sound, a smell, a plugin, a lotion whatever it may be just be sure that it is something that is relaxing to you. Now, this can be a thin line, if you are inhaling and sniffing at lotion on your hands to the point of no return or rubbing essential oils on your body so much that you end up with a rash because of the stress of your job, perhaps its time to look into getting a new job. At that point you are beyond any self care practices.
3. Take time to Breathe - Seriously. Between everything that you do, between all of your hussle and bussle take time to breathe. Maybe it's only a few seconds, perhaps a few minutes but take time to breathe. A few deep breaths can go a long way.
4. Set Boundaries - Setting boundaries for your work life is key when practicing self-care at work. For me, this means working your wage and only doing work during your set hours of employment, especially if you are a salaried worker. When you are a salaried worker, no matter how early you come into work or how late you stay completing your work, you still only get the same amount of money each paycheck. Same way, doing extra work or working extra hard isn't going to get you anywhere either, its all still the same, and you may not get the recognition or even a thank you that you may be looking for. Seriously, preventing work stress and practicing self-care at work means doing as much as you can in the set hours you get paid, no more and no less.
5. Find Connection - Connecting with co-workers is important for you practicing self-care at work as well. But keep in mind, all co-workers are not created equal. So it's about finding those co-workers who have your best interest in mind, and who can serve as proper venting and sounding boards without spewing anything you say to others, or to your boss. Connect with those who encourage you to move up in your career (even if its outside of your agency) and those who are willing to listen when your boss is acting like a dictator.
6. Know when to stop - The last way in which you can practice self-care at work is to know when to stop. Knowing when to stop working with clients, when to stop work overall, when to stop trying, and most importantly knowing when to leave. Be it knowing when to leave at the end of the day or knowing when its time to just quit.