“In the past week, I had a deadline on a work project, we doubled down on our business objectives, [our son] got ear infections and the flu, and then I got really sick as well,” says April Lovett, COO and Success Coach for The Lovett Co. “All of these stressors added up for me so that they ended up taking a toll on 3 key things: my physical health, my family, and my work productivity.”
Seemingly little, everyday stressors like project deadlines, sick kids, or being late to work can pile up and contribute to poor health. Small stresors can affect your physical health by altering your hormones, lowering your immune system, contributing to high blood pressure and even weight gain. It can also put a strain on your relationships by making relationship issues seem worse than they actually are, causing you to overreact to those you love. Stress can make you less productive at work and more likely to quit- even if you actually like your job!
Instead of succumbing to the effects of stress, take a deep breath and employ our 3 tips (below) for relaxing and recharging while you're at work. These tips are powerful, yet so covert your coworkers won’t know that you're actually taking care of your health instead of working on that spreadsheet!
1. Move. “When I have big projects I’m working on in my office and I start to get that feeling of being unsettled and uneasy, I lose my focus,” says Darryl Lovett, CEO and Success Coach for The Lovett Co.- a Leadership and Success Company. “So I get up and walk out of my office and around the building. Sometimes I’ll venture outside for a dose of fresh air.” Moving helps get your blood flowing, re-energizing the creative juices you need to finish that project.
How much movement do you need? Not that much. A simple 15-minute walk will be enough to get your blood pumping and positively affect your neurological activity. Don’t have 15 minutes? Take a quick 10-minute break and do something a little more vigorous, like walking up and down stairs to get your blood flowing in a hurry.
2. Get Lost in Your Music. “I usually plug my headphones in with some music on low to drown out outside noise. Familiar tunes help me focus on a project because I already know the lyrics and beat,” says April. “But I also use new music or new podcasts to give my brain a break from complicated projects,” she says. “I’ll take a 10 or 15 minute walk and bring my tunes with me to recharge my brain.”
3. Breathe. “This sounds so simple, yet it’s the one that I always forget,” says April. “If I’m heading into a stressful meeting, coming from a stressful encounter, or working on a stressful project, I have a post-it note on my computer that says: ‘Breathe…2…3…4…’ to remind me to take a deep breath and count my inhale and exhale.” Deep breathing increases oxygen flow in your body, thereby increasing alertness, according to the Mayo Clinic. Conscious breathing also allows you to release negative emotions, which can manifest as tension in your back, shoulders, and neck muscles if not released via breath.
What's your best covert relax and recharge tip? Let us know in the comments below!
Want more on relaxing and recharging? Tune in to this week's episode of Success in Black and White- The Podcast.
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