Health they say is wealth. Hence, both employer and employee have mutual responsibilities in maintaining workers health and productivity, because a healthy worker and work environment benefits both parties.
On the other hand, unhealthy workers or work environments affect productivity and profitability. Health Advocate reports that 1 million Americans miss work each year due to stress, costing employers $600 per worker per year or $600 million dollars annually.
The following table shows
Number of Sick Leave Days U.S Adults Took (2017)
Imagine the huge cost to employers and the economy if or when 16% of 18-30 year olds take sick leaves of up to 10 days per year.
Yet in spite of these, not every employer is committed to staff welfare and healthcare, especially in developing countries. So what should you do if you find yourself in such a place or case, fold your hands and watch? Certainly not.
In this post I’ll be sharing tips to help you maintain your health and productivity at the workplace. So here are
6 Essential Tips for Maintaining Health and Productivity at Work
To maintain optimal health and productivity at work you need to
Start a Healthy Morning Routine
A healthy morning routine is a great way to begin the day before you leave for work. Although it is called a morning routine, it actually begins from the night before. This is necessary to free up some time in the morning to accommodate your morning routine.
A good morning routine can include:
- Waking early
- Working out
- Taking a bath
- Having breakfast
- Interacting with the kids
- Kissing your wife/husband “goodbye”
- Driving or walking to work
- Brief early morning meetings
- Coffee and biscuits
- Clear office desk, etc
The list is endless and should incorporate as many things as you think can be done to make your work/day easier.
Knocking off your morning routine day after day creates a positive feeling of achievement which helps to lift your mood and entrench a can-do attitude towards every other task on your to do list. In other words, a great morning routine should be top of your to-do list.
Stay Motivated, Positive
Motivation and positivity are great for having or creating a great day. It’s a terrible feeling to wake up all weak, moody and depressed. On such days getting out of bed becomes a chore, you binge on food or Netflix, then at the close of the day you end up feeling terrible for being such a time waster.
On the other hand, waking up with positive energy and motivation makes you want to jump out of bed, workout, shower, eat breakfast and hurry off to work. But, what if the reverse is the case for some reason and you’re not at your best? Considering the negative effects of prolonged, untreated depression on you and your job, it behoves on you to shake it off.
There are several ways to get and stay motivated after bouts of depression including
- Listening to relaxing music
- Working out
- Talking with a confidant
- Reading a book
- Reading and reciting motivational speeches
- Taking a walk in the garden
- Stroking your pet
- Seeking medical help
- Practicing gratitude
- Mindfulness, etc
For the sake of your health and wealth (job), do everything in your power to stay motivated no matter what.
Watch that Office Temperature
A 2016 study by the Helsinki University of Technology found that the best temperature range for optimum productivity at work sat somewhere between 69.8 and 71.6 degrees Fahrenheit.
Another study conducted by Cornell University in 2004 found that
“workers who struggle to stay warm make more mistakes, which in turn can lead to a 10 percent spike in hourly labor costs. A 9-degree boost in office temperature — from 68 degrees to 77 degrees Fahrenheit — significantly improved worker performance. Typing mistakes decreased 44 percent, while overall keying output yielded a 150 percent increase.”
In yet another study, the U.S. Department of Commerce found that “an overly heated workplace can leave employees fatigued, irritable and struggling to concentrate. Source
So you need to watch the office temperature to be sure it isn’t messing with your health or productivity.
Avoid Junk Food
Many times when we sleep late, snooze the alarm and wake up late, we tend to hurry and skip essential things like our morning routine and breakfast, sometimes even a bath. These have a way of coming back at us, boomerang style.
In some cases, because we arrive work late we tend to also sacrifice lunch break (in addition to skipped breakfast) just so we can make up for lost time and piled up work. In such cases we opt for fast food or the nearest junk food we can find. This can have a negative impact on our health and productivity at work.
Junk food can cause:
- Dental distress
- Heart disease or stroke
- Shortness of breath
- High cholesterol
- Weight gain
- High blood pressure
- Blood sugar spike
- Extra calories
- Insulin resistance
- Bloating and puffiness
Don’t skip lunch for work, at least not habitually. Sometimes you need to take a break from all that work, because guess what, if you drop dead from stress and overwork, they’d go Bey and get another you in a minute. So learn to relax.
When you take a break your body also takes a well deserved break. The eyes take a break from focusing on the computer screen all day. Your fingers leave the keyboard and get some rest too, etc. You can also stretch your back and bones, stand and take a walk to improve blood flow and circulation.
Even when work is flowing smoothly you should learn to take a break after working extended periods. And if your body ever complains of pain and discomfort while working (especially long hours) you need to learn to pay attention to that.
Stick to Safety Regulations
This may be last on my list of six, but it is by no means the least. In fact, it is one of the most important rules in workplace health, safety and security. If there are any safety standards around your profession or job, do well to study, learn and even memorize them, plus emergency response procedures.
If you work with radiation or radioactive materials you should do well to wear protective clothing as prescribed and carry out routine checks to monitor your dosimetry levels so as not to unnecessarily expose yourself to preventable cancer.
Electricity workers, gas workers, military, etc, all face their fair share of occupational hazards. Being cautious and careful will ensure your safety and health in such working environments. So work hard to master every single safety tip. The safer you are and feel, the more productive you’re likely to become.
Your safety, health and productivity are all interconnected. The absence of one can affect the other adversely.
- Start a healthy morning routine
- Stay motivated, positive
- Watch that office temperature
- Avoid junk food
- Take breaks, and
- Stick to safety regulations and codes
Amos Onwukwe is an AWAI trained Business and Ecommerce Copywriter who has been featured in scores of blogs including Huffington Post, Dumb Little Man, Ecommerce Nation, eCommerce Insights, Understanding Ecommerce, Result First, Floship, Successful Startup 101, Small Biz Club, Small Business Bonfire, among others.