We speak to a lot of people in our world – trying to understand what is preventing people from feeling their best and perfuming at their optimum. And the general consensus is that people we speak to seem to be feeling more stressed and overwhelmed than ever before. But worry not…we understand why and we have some tried and tested tools to help you out! Yes peeps, we have your back!
We face something of a modern day paradox. The world is progressing faster than ever – which is bloody awesome! We can travel anywhere we want to, stay in contact with people all over the world and we have more opportunities than ever before. These advancements should be making our lives easier and more fulfilling right? So why are humans less happy? Statistics from the World Health organisation show that rates of stress, depression and other mood disorders are on the rise and the prescription of anti-depression medication is at an all time high
Something is not adding up and we think we have the answer! Through our work with individuals, teams and organisations researching how we can help them to thrive in the workplace and through life in general, we know the answer lies in the fact that people are struggling to cope with the life overload and the overwhelm it brings! Developments in technology mean that we are hyper-connected – often feeling like we are on-call 24 hours a day and cannot disconnect to the various sources of media that are bombarding us from the minute we wake up to the minute we go to bed
We turn on our phones in the morning and we are welcomed to the new day by a string of messages and emails from friends, family and colleagues notifying us of an array of non-negotiable social arrangements we must make, business tasks we must immediately jump onto or meeting requests we must accept. It is enough to send us into an immediate tailspin of frazzle and overwhelm
It is not unusual for us to find it difficult to switch off from work and restore our bodies and minds. This inability to restore, however, is not only detrimental to our health, it is counter productive to our ability to perform at our best in the workplace and across all areas of life. We are not machines and we need time to recharge and recover if we are to perform at our best
So what the heck is the solution?
I am not going to leave you hanging! Below I have outlined my simple top 5 tips for switching off and restoring your body and mind so you can start to engage more with the world, boost your happiness and actually elevate your performance in work and across all areas of life!
#1 Create a ritual that signifies the end of your working day. For example, I encourage my clients to go for a walk, change their clothes, put on some music etc. Something that changes your state from alert and responsive to relaxed and off duty!
#2 Implement an evening phone ban so you can be present with your partner, the people you are spending time with or engaged in whichever activity you choose to spend your time! e.g. I would encourage you to turn your phone off after 9pm. Not only will this allow you to be truly present, it will also increase your chances of gaining some quality sleep. And if you use your phone as an alarm…buy an alarm clock!
#3 Introduce a hobby into your evenings that will help to tame your monkey mind – that mind that worries about EVERYTHING and distracts you form enjoying the good stuff in life. e.g. I suggest for clients to think about a skill they’d like to develop or a hobby they enjoyed as a child. When you find something new and exciting, you are more likely to be totally mindful and focused on the task at hand than to be distracted and sucked into worrying about work emails / family obligations etc.
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#4 Devise a morning routine that allows you to prime yourself for the day ahead so you are ready to face whatever life throws at you! It has been proven that how we spend the first 90 minutes of each day, has a significant impact on our mood and mindset for the rest of our day. Emails / texts / social media notifications will still be there for you to deal with when you’re ready but give yourself a better chance of success by focusing your first 90 minutes on the things that will boost your mindset. e.g. Try any combination of exercise, getting outside, reading, journalling, eating a healthy breakfast, engaging with your partner etc
#5 My fifth and most favourite tip is meditation! Always meditation! Now don’t freak out if you the pure mention of meditation makes you restrict into your shell! Meditation does not have to be difficult, it can be as simple as taking ten deep breaths when you are feeling stressed and overwhelmed. By getting out of your head and focusing on your breath you immediately start to reverse the flow of cortisol and restore your body. Meditation is the act of observing your thoughts for a really short period of time so you are less distracted and pushed around by them for the rest of the day. Building a meditation practice means that you will be more focused when you are in the work place and less reactive and distracted by work related thoughts when you are at home
Remember that we are human beings and like top athletes, if we do not give ourselves chance to restore, we will never be able to perform at our best and will eventually burn out. This is a fact. To give yourself the best chance of success, try and incorporate some of the above tips into your daily routine to allow your body and mind chance to reset, recharge and come back stronger and better than ever
The Vibrancy Hub is a wellbeing consultancy offering coaching, workshops and programmes designed so individuals, teams and organisations can thrive. We’d love to have a conversation with you about how we can support your organisation to build a more vibrant, high performing culture – providing teams with the tools to better manage the overwhelm of workplace stress and life overload!