Engaged at Work, While Focused on You
How-To Avoid Mid-Week Burn Out
The last several weeks, I had been hit hard by mid-week burn out. By Wednesday I had been begging for my PTO. I just. couldn’t. go. on. (Can you tell I’m dramatic?) Finally, two weeks ago, as I sat inhaling the last 4 Oreos from the box, I realized something had to change – and that something was someone – and that someone was me! So here it is! 7 ways you can avoid wanting to give up and tap out of your work week. Enjoy the things I’ve done differently to help keep from crashing with exhaustion and apathy, especially if you’re trying to maintain a full-time job and a side-hustle like me!
1. Breathe, Stretch, Shake, Let it Go
I once watched a newscaster comment on the amazing posture of Taylor Swift. Now, every time I see Taylor Swift, I perk up and sit up straighter. A recent article from “The Guardian” tells us that Americans sit for about 5 to 6 hours a day! (Yes, insert disgusted, horrified emoji face here). Using my timer cube, I’ve really aimed to make time to move. Take more deep breaths, roll your shoulders back, bend over and touch those nicely manicured toes! Instant mood booster, you’ll gain mental clarity from this little tip.
2. Eat Food that Rots
Ok sounds crazy, but anything that comes in a pre-packaged wrapper, and doesn’t need refrigeration is most likely processed and loaded with sugar.
Not only does meal planning ahead, save me from rushing to a drive-thru, but it also protects my wallet. TIP:If you struggle to meal plan, I suggest making extra portions of your dinner. Use the left overs for the next day’s lunch using these meal prep containers. GET $10 OFF your next grocery bill by clicking HERE to start your 2-week grocery delivery service for FREE. Now, you have no excuse to not get good and healthy food into your belly.
Think lots of water, dried nuts, a whole piece of fruit, a bag of veggies, and lots of green!
3. Mindfulness Matters
Just about anything can be “fun” if we put our mind to it. Mindfulness is a hot topic right now, and I talk about it and implement it in all my therapy sessions – even the ones with kids! It means a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.
Also, Mindfulness gives us a feeling like we are truly living our life.
Mindfulness also helps people focus on themselves, and make small modifications to maintain an inner peace – even when external circumstances are out of place and/or chaotic. This keeps us calm, keeps us cool, keeps us engaged with ourselves while still allowing us to focus on others.
Let’s practice right now. Take a second, and swallow on purpose. This clears your airway. Release your jaw to let it “hang” a little. Notice your mouth? Are you thirsty? Notice the sounds around you. What’s affecting you? What can you modify to make your body and mind more comfortable? Go ahead and do this now.
4. Bullet Journal
Bring a small pad of paper around with you as you work. Can’t go wrong with a cute pad like this. Don’t write down your deepest darkest secrets or nothing, just take note of interesting things throughout your day. Jot down what you enjoyed most from that podcast you’re listening to as you venture to and from meetings. Write down an idea you have to make things better in the break room. Note a co-worker’s birthday and how she just moved from out-of-state 3 months ago. Something about pen to paper also helps what we call in therapy to “ground” a person. It’s just another part of mindfulness!
A big, full life is lived in the small things. Put a bunch of good, small things together and you get a nice, full and hearty life.
5. Plan Ahead
I really try to do my best to confirm all my upcoming appointments on Friday to be ready for the next week. Doing this, especially, when I have early Monday meetings has been a lifesaver. And by “lifesaver,” I mean it keeps me from complaining that so-and-so person was late, or forgot an appointment. Make a message a friendly reminder, and relay to people how much you look forward to working with them. Don’t be afraid to make it a little personal, and end those follow-up emails with a personalized sign off. For example: “Hope you have a great weekend, Holly! Enjoy that yoga class! Best, Meg.”
People often think work has to suck. It doesn’t.Work can be satisfying when you find a sense of purpose, and when you connect with people regularly that make you smile. Promotions are not just about moving up in management, or getting a raise. Promote the people, the talent, the skills and services you find around you throughout the workday. This can mean you share a co-worker’s good idea or helpful tip with another co-worker. Also, it can mean you recommend that lunch spot to your boss. This can mean you pass along a business contact to your client that isn’t quite a good fit for you.
You can make work amazing by directing awesome people to other awesome people.
7. After Party
Remember that article from “The Guardian”? It also told us that Americans spend at least 3 hours a day watching tv! WTF. 3 x 7 = 21. There are 168 hours total in each week. That means if you turn on Netflix regularly, you spend about 8% of your time glued to a screen.
Honey, that ain’t no party. That is you, locked in your tiny and dark little corner of the world after work and forgetting that there is a whole world outside of your isolated routine.
Last week, I tried really hard to not pop on the boob tube. By Tuesday I felt strange like I had a missing finger or like I forgot my middle name. But by Wednesday, I swear to you, it was like brain cells started regenerating in my brain. I had much more clarity, and my mood was increased. Instead of entertaining myself with a screen, I took a stroll around Target, organized a couple closets, came home and took a catnap! It was gloRRRRRious!!!!! (So was the $25 wreath I ended up buying at Target, btw!)
Use your time after work to venture into new areas of your neighborhood. Phone a friend you haven’t talked to in a while. Read a book – or read a few pages of that book you haven’t finished in 3 months because… well, Netflix.