Mental wellness is increasingly important in the workplace. As little as 20 years ago, it was common for the average Canadian to work 9-5, Monday to Friday. Given changes in technology, the economy, and the job market, a great number of people work later, harder, and take less vacation.
It comes as no surprise that happiness and productivity suffers and stress spikes in these situations. So what can be done when inspiration wanes and it starts to affect feelings in the workplace?
There are a number of measures you can take to find inspiration and pick yourself up. Start by stepping out of routine. Taking an active interest in people and activities around you will not only get your mind off everything that’s been consuming you, it’ll put you more in touch with your environment.
Remember that life isn’t all about work. It’s easy to get consumed by a job to the point where you neglect your wellbeing, or worse, your job turns something you used to love into something that you despise. An example would be a chef who, at the end of a busy dinner service for the fifth consecutive day, comes home and doesn’t want to even look at their kitchen come mealtime. It’s therefore important to have other interests outside of working hours.
Get back in touch with your hobbies or discover new ones. Having something to look forward to at the end of the day besides a couch and TV remote goes a long way. It puts you in a good place, ultimately carrying through to your work. The energy and inspiration received from playing a game, travelling, learning a language, or simply going for a walk, will put your mind at ease. Looking forward to something positive and occupying yourself with it is important. Anxiety builds when there isn’t an opportunity to take a step back from the stresses of the day.
If you’re having trouble disconnecting from the chaos of the day, turn off your phone. It’s unreasonable for people to expect you to always be available, especially outside of work hours, when you’re supposed to take personal time to recharge. Too much multitasking can divide our attention and wreak havoc on productivity. Take breaks, remember to breathe, and try your best to live in the moment. Meditation is an option for some, and there are many ways to meditate through other means: reading a book, listening to music or a podcast, or walking through a garden or park will tranquilize your mind and give you something to think about, evaluate, and calm the senses.
No matter how you find peace of mind, understand that it isn’t unreasonable to seek it out. There’s nothing wrong with being dedicated to your work, but everyone at some point reaches their breaking point and needs to take a step back. It’s important to learn your triggers, and be able to detect when your mind needs a break.