For most professionals and even business owners, our offices are where we spent most of our time. Modern-day work schedules are such that we often end up feeling exhausted and stressed at the end of the day. It never seems to get over and we remain glued to office emails, calls and texts after hours, on weekends and even during vacation time.
What we don't realise is that in our attempts to manage everything as well as we can, we end up neglecting our own wellbeing, which in turn impacts our productivity.
An alarming number of health disorders have their roots in an unhealthy work-life balance. It is not uncommon for the Indian workforce to complain of hypertension, lumbar issues, cervical spasm, insomnia, eye strain and carpel tunnel syndrome amongst others.
While more and more organisations are realising that the wellbeing of their associates is of paramount importance, the work culture and the toll it takes on our bodies and minds may not be something that changes overnight.
With that in perspective, I would like to recommend a few simple practices and changes to your routine that can truly help ensure that your health remains intact in the long run.
1. Workout at least four times a week. It might seem difficult due to the travel time between home and work or long hours in the office but what seems to work best is to find a place close to the office. Another great way to ensure that you don't skip a workout is to join a group class - yoga, dance fitness, HIIT or anything else that works best for you. Your instructor or coach along with your classmates will be motivation enough for you to make it regularly.
2. Eat at least two meals from home. If your job profile includes entertaining clients or travelling a lot, this can be difficult. Nevertheless, try and eat home-cooked meals as often as often as you can.
3. Don't remain sitting for long. Stand up every hour and walk around for a couple of minutes. A lot of back related aches and disorders happen because of sitting for too long.
4. Practice good ergonomics. Insist that your chair at work is comfortable and designed to support your back and neck. Ensure that your computer is at least 12 inches from your eye level.
5. Practice mindfulness. Pick a time to meditate that works best for you - it could be as soon as you wake up in the morning, in the middle of the day or even just before you go to bed. Take a couple of minutes, breathe deeply and be still. Try and not to think about anything in particular during this time and chant if you feel that will help.
6. Don't look at your work mails till you are ready to leave for office. Most of us reach for our phone and check emails as soon as we wake up and there can be nothing worse. Similarly, don't look at your emails for at least 15 minutes before bedtime.
7. Take the stairs as much as you can. This little bit of cardio, even if it is only a couple of flights, keeps your blood flowing and ensures that you don't tire too easily.
It may seem like a lot at the first glance, but it is something that you must selfishly do for yourself. As Indians, we are not usually conditioned to put ourselves first; but if you think of it from the perspective that a lot of people - your family, your pet, your colleagues, your friends and those you employ depend on you remaining in the pink of health, it might just change your point of view!
If you have any questions on how you can make these lifestyle changes, please feel free to write to me on firstname.lastname@example.org
About the author:Dr. Hrishikesh is an MS in ShalyaTantra (Ayurvedic Surgery) from SSR Ayurveda Medical College & Hospital and is a graduate of JSS Ayurveda Medical College & Hospital. He also holds a post graduate diploma in Yoga from Annamalai University. A fifth generation Ayurvedic doctor, his family owns and runs an Ayurvedic Hospital in Kerala which specialises in creating their own in-house medicines. Dr. Hrishikesh brings with him a clinical experience of nearly ten years and specialises in Panchakarma and sports rehabilitation.