How To Work On Your Mental Health At Your Day Job

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The workday is filled with many instances that can put a strain on your mental health. In a 2021 American Psychological Association report, 3 in 5 employees (59%) said they experienced negative impacts of work-related stress. The solution for many is to binge on social media or bad food, or ignore their mental health entirely. However, these habits can lead to depression, mood swings, and other early signs of a mental health disorder. Stress from work is inevitable, but strengthening mental health in the workplace is not impossible. Here are a couple of ways you can work on your mental health during your day job. 

Talk With A Coworker

Many people believe they have to bite their tongues at work when they’re feeling stressed, nervous, or depressed about something. Bottling up discomfort may seem like the easy and convenient thing to do, but usually, it does not help anyone, especially yourself. This can grow into resentment toward your workplace, affecting work performance and making each day harder than it needs to be. 

Instead, confine in a trusted co-worker about what’s going on. In many instances, they’ll have gone through the same situation, and can offer guidance, connection, and understanding. As a bonus, you may even make a new friend in the process. 

Eat And Drink Well 

High-fat and caffeinated drinks and food, such as coffee and donuts, are common in the workplace. Coffee has been ingrained in our minds as the essential morning drink. Sweets and junk food are eaten as a way to relieve stress and are advertised as convenient options for a busy day. Even though they taste good and can provide a quick energy boost, they often lead to fatigue, which then turns into anxiety and stress. 

Eating right is one of the many workplace health strategies laid out by The Centers for Disease Control And Prevention (CDC). Try skipping out on coffee a few days of the week and replace it with water or a natural fruit drink. For lunch, bring healthier foods to work, such as vegetables, fish, and trail mix. These are better for your mood and won’t lead to an afternoon crash. 

Take A Break 

By law, the typical 8-hour workday requires employers to grant workers at least a thirty-minute to an hour break. Unfortunately, many find this time is not used appropriately. You may end up eating lunch at your desk while still working, or skip out on it and wait until after work to relax. 

Not taking a break can cause you to feel overwhelmed, tired, and bitter. Breaks are put in place to allow your brain to recharge and are a chance to enjoy something that can bring you joy, such as reading, listening to music, or meditating. These can counterbalance feelings of stress, and give you time to reflect on your day, your goals, and more. 

Help Others 

Mental health disorders can be relieved by helping out someone else at work. As you may confide in a co-worker when things seem bad, turn around and be a good companion back to them. You don’t have to solve their problems; sometimes, it’s enough to just listen, reassure, and make them feel they are not alone.

You can offer to buy them lunch at one of their favorite restaurants, or take a few minutes to chat by their desk and ask how they’re doing. By being there for someone else, you can get outside of your own head. You might also have feelings of joy and happiness knowing you are doing a good deed. 

Final Word 

Use these suggestions to work on mental health throughout the day. Doing so can lead to a healthier mindset and better use of your time outside the workplace. 

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