Update concerning COVID-19 – Distance Learning (home study) courses are still available. Find out more about distance learning at Pitman Training

Update concerning COVID-19 – Distance Learning (home study) courses are still available. Find out more about distance learning at Pitman Training

Wellbeing in the Workplace

28/08/18

As humans, we’re conditioned to favour routine - knowing what to do and when. However, the 9 to 5 grind can sometimes be exactly that; a grind. It’s not uncommon for people to get bored of the routine that they’re in. Being in a set routine for so long can make people start questioning whether there’s more to life than turning up to work for the day, staring at a screen for 8+ hours then returning home to sit and stare at another screen for another few hours until they go to bed. Constantly waiting for the weekend to swing round each week can take its toll mentally even if you really enjoy what you do!

If you find yourself in this position, here are a few things that you can do to improve your mental wellbeing while at work, easing the mental toll of the working routine:

  • Always Strive to Learn

According to multiple research outlets and mind.co.uk, the will to learn a new skill or area of interest has actually been proven to pull adults and the elderly out of depression. So, if you feel like you’re getting stuck in a rut at work, the solution might be found by learning a new skill. For example, learning how to use a new program, or stepping up and taking on someone else’s responsibilities when somebody needs covering are easy ways to learn new skills. There are many options or skills that you can choose to learn, you just need to figure out which would best suit you. This also goes for the aspects in your private life; taking up a new hobby, learning a new skill, or reading a book on a topic that you’ve never touched before can encourage a happier and healthier mind. More often than not, learning something new can encourage much more social interaction, it can boost self-esteem and inadvertently makes you a more active person!

  • Connect With Colleagues

Evidence shows that making close relationships at work provides people with a valued feeling. Even if you are more naturally an isolated, introverted person, having someone to talk to is imperative. Keeping busy by engaging in conversation and social interaction really does help to maintain good mental health and wellbeing. For instance, you can connect to people a lot easier by walking to their desks and having a conversation instead of calling or emailing; by speaking to someone new; by giving a colleague a lift to work or walking to lunch with them. All of these give people enough chance to make closer connections while at work. It’s ok to engage in casual conversation whilst working, doing so means you’re making work more fun and a place that you enjoy going, rather than something to get through.

  • Stay Active

They say that stress manifests itself as a physical symptom – headaches, tense muscles, nausea etc. With everything in our bodies being interlinked in some way it makes sense that being active and doing some exercise really helps with our mental wellbeing. Start small - take a walk at lunchtime, walk to work, get off the bus stop one stop earlier etc. If you’re into something a little bit more intense, how about joining the gym with a friend, family member or colleague and take part in some classes. Every little helps, each small increase in physical activity will positively contribute to a boost in your overall wellbeing.

  • There’s Power in Giving

Whether it’s time, an ear, support or reassurance, giving can be one of the most powerful things you do. Not only will you become a trusted member of your work community which will positively impact your sense of self-worth, your colleagues will be grateful to know that you’re there to lend an ear when needed.

The key point of mental wellbeing is communication. Without the opportunity to speak and share with others, we become vaults, bottling all our feelings and thoughts that should probably be shared. The longer you hold onto certain emotions or thoughts, the likelier it is that you hold onto them, becoming more and more reluctant to communicate or express your worries. Opening up and talking to those around you can sometimes be easier said than done but no one should have to keep everything to themselves. That’s why we believe it’s important to build the workplace relationships and create a safe space to express feelings and talk.

*Important: if you find yourself feeling progressively worse or are showing the signs of struggling mentally, we recommend that you go and see a local GP or Counsellor. Even if you talk to a close family member or friends, it’s better than closing yourself off and keeping everything bottled up. Talking is only the beginning. From there, you can start to plan your road to recovery and better mental wellbeing. Also, if you notice changes in your fellow colleagues, don’t be scared to try and help. Even if you’re able to redirect them to someone who can provide professional medical advice, you’ve done your bit for office wellbeing.*

 

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