Ten healthy new habits for the workplace
We all know that if we do something often enough it becomes a habit, a thing we do without even thinking about it.
At work we can all make small, simple changes to our behaviour that can turn into healthy new habits.
Initially, trying something different may feel uncomfortable or inconvenient but soon enough the changes are just part of our normal daily routine.
Challenge yourself to try some or all of these. Introduce them one at a time and when your new habit sticks, move on to another one.
Five ways to move more
- Get rid of individual desk bins and just have two central bins in your office, one for waste and one for recycling. That way, every time you need to throw something away, you’ll have to get up and move. It's an easy way to beat the downsides of spending too long on your backside.
- Stand when you answer the telephone. If you take a call on your mobile, move around while you talk taking care not to disturb your colleagues.
- If you usually take the lift to your floor, try taking the stairs instead. Depending on what floor you work on, you can take the stairs all or part of the way.
- Instead of emailing colleagues about simple things, walk over to their desk and chat about it. This has the added benefits of improving your relationships with your colleagues, strengthening your networks, keeping your inbox manageable and resolving minor issues quickly.
- If you spend a lot of time in meetings, choose to stand for part of the meeting. Standing unobtrusively near the back of the room during presentations is also a good way of breaking up sitting time without drawing attention to yourself.
Five ways to eat better
- Take your own healthy lunch to work. Prepare your lunch for the next day while you are making the evening meal. Chop extra salad into your lunchbox or cook an extra portion of your meal and you’re sorted with minimum fuss.
- Keep emergency supplies in your desk drawer or workplace fridge. If you’re too rushed to eat breakfast or prepare your lunch, you’ll still have some healthy options on hand, such as tinned salmon and low-salt wholegrain crackers.
- Break the habit of buying soft drinks from the office vending machine and drink more water instead. Your office should have water available, so start each day by filling a jug or large bottle of water and drink it throughout the day.
- Substitute unhealthy snacks with healthy ones. Try snacking on fruit or chopped vegetables like carrots.
- Eat mindfully. This probably means moving away from your desk to eat so that you can concentrate on your food as you eat it. Even better, take a short walk to a local park and enjoy your lunch there.
Ready to create a healthy new habit? Where will you start?
Until next time,
The Happy Worker