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Up to 1/3 of your life could be spent at work, or working. Crazy, right?
When a place takes up so much of your daily time, how can the average person also commit to staying healthy? It's not easy. Take the upcoming new year as an opportunity reminding yourself to work on these tips should help to improve your day-to-day quality of life.
Stand More, Sit Less
Not everyone has a standing desk. If find yourself sitting in an office for most of the day, it's necessary to take standing/walking breaks not only for your health but your productivity. According to this Health article: "Moving around throughout your workday is really important," says Robert Graham, MD, director of integrative health and wellness for Northwell Health System, in Great Neck, NY. "Not only is it good for you physically, but studies show that it can increase productivity and more likely to focus on the task at hand."
Get Some Fresh Air
Depending on the amenities of your office, you may not know you have exposure to "occupational allergies" aka sensitivity to chemicals in different things like carpet, paint, or furniture. Or, you may just be in a stuffy space and feel the pressure from lack of ventilation.
You can't change the decor. But you can change other things:
- If available to you (and not too cold) open windows and/or doors to bring in air.
- Step outside for a few minutes each day and take a couple deep breaths. Deep breathing is also a good screen break, so might as well do both at the same time.
- Get a small air purifier for your desk/cubicle/office.
Buy a Plant
Not only are plants aesthetic to look at in a space and known to spark creativity, some are also full of natural air purifying qualities.
Go for green, leafy plants as certain flowers can bring too strong of a smell and cacti don't come across as the most relaxing.
We're channeling grandma/mom or whoever told you to "stand up straight!" for this one. Even if you aren't standing throughout the day, slouching while sitting is bad for both mental and physical health. Hunching over your computer screen lets you feel lazy and leads to back pain.
When you're not taking walking breaks, see if your company can provide ergonomic desk chairs or invest in gadgets like Lumo Lift that will remind you to correct your stance.
We've already covered two different reasons for taking breaks: to increase movement and get some fresh air. Another often forgotten is the lunch break. No matter how hectic your day may be, it's key to step away from your computer and eat at a designated spot that is not your by your keyboard.
Not only does this time let you re-charge, it prevents you from mindlessly over-eating from failed multi-tasking.
New year, new you? Or at least a better improved version of you.