This week's BYP Blog is a guest article from Lildonia Lawrence, a life coach, educator and yoga instructor. Lildonia produces monthly content for the BYP Network centred on wellbeing, wellness and healthy living.
Work. It’s a massive part of our lives. The average employee working a 40-hour week typically clocks up over 2000 working hours a year. If our work environment is positive, this can provide a multitude of benefits for overall wellbeing. However, if working conditions are less than ideal, we can be hit with a wide range of barriers including dissatisfaction and workplace stress. Even those of us who love our jobs are not immune to down days.
Here are my top tips for keeping your energy up at work.
Rise Above the Petty Brigade
Humans love a moan and office environments are a hotspot for coffee break gossip. Everyone needs to blow off steam from time to time but there is a danger of creating a culture of complaining. I remember working in an organisation undergoing a restructure. People were understandably frustrated and that become the topic of the day at any given opportunity. We’d discuss our dissatisfaction over lunch and gripes and groans quickly made their way into leaving dos and after-work drinks. I found myself feeling drained around colleagues who usually energised me, and this had an impact on my mood outside of work. Try your best to avoid these kinds of conversations. Bring worries or concerns to 1-1s and when speaking with colleagues try to remain action-focused. If change is desired, take the time to implement new ways of working rather than making static complaints. Ban work chat with colleagues outside of office hours so that you can spend time with your team in a positive capacity allowing for camaraderie and light relief on office outings as opposed to an extension of the working day.
Find Your Allies
Similarly, to the outside world, it is impossible to enjoy everyone’s company and there will be people you gel with more than others. Tap into those individuals. Whether it’s the colleague from another department you work with every so often to the receptionist that you bump into at the gym. Having people in the organisation that you click with (either personally or professionally) is both motivating and refreshing. Once you’ve found your allies, stay in touch. Whether it’s suggesting ways to collaborate, sharing industry knowledge or catching up for a coffee, individuals such as these can provide a welcome boost to your week.
Remember Your Master Plan
We all have parts of our job that we don’t like, and sometimes red tape and bureaucracy can keep us from getting on with the work we love. Take time to map out how your current role fits in with your overall career plan. I’m people-focused and found the statistics portion of my Psychology degree tedious. However, I stuck with it and years later I got a job based partially on my experience with reporting and data. Had I tapped into my ‘why’ whilst I was studying and kept in mind my overall goal it would have made the experience more worthwhile and relevant.
Lildonia Lawrence is a life coach, yoga instructor and sex educator working in London. She has a background in psychology and mental health and has spent many years working in the health and wellbeing industries. Her week is spent with a mixture of delivering health workshops, teaching group classes and leading coaching sessions. Alongside this, she works as a wellbeing writer for several publications. You can find out more about her work at @lildonia.lawrence