It happens every year: a single sneezing co-worker.
No matter how hard you try to avoid him or her, you’re trapped together in an office with light switches, doorknobs, and water cooler spigots to roll down the germs. Then, before you know it, half of your department has come down with something. So now you start pushing elevator buttons with your elbows, using hand sanitizer by the gallons, and opening restroom doors with your handkerchief. You think you’re out of danger now, right?
Not certainly. The close wall of your workplace may promote alliance, but they also encourage spreading of germs. According to a study, respiratory bugs and viruses can disperse throughout a workplace in less than four hours. Germs hide in the most unexpected places.
Trying to stay healthy while sitting at a desk for eight or even more hours a day can be challenging. The question then arises – what do we do about it?
6 Tips To Help Stay Healthy At The Workplace
If you are looking for answers, here are some tips that would help. Some are motivational, some are hygiene centric and all guarantee that you are mentally and physically fired up for the challenges ahead of you, to make sure you get productivity, creativity and bliss out of the working hours.
1. Move It Or Lose It
Exercise gets the blood pumping and oxygen flowing, which in turn releases endorphins, whether it’s a gym session or a 20-minute run. Studies have proven that exercise makes us happier, sharper and productive.
2. Eat Right And Light
What you put in your body holds huge importance. Skipping breakfast will just make you irritable, low in energy and won’t produce successful results. Make breakfast a priority and take out time in the morning to sit and enjoy it.
Eat a balanced meal such as baked beans on wholemeal toast, mushroom, and tomato or porridge with blueberries with sprinkled flax seed. All these contain a fusion of slow release carbs, fiber, and protein.
3. Clean Your Work Desk
We sit at our desks for around 8 hours a day, typing, drinking, and eating. Think of all those crumbs falling on your keyboard. Every time you go out and touch a door handle or a file, you come back and immediately start typing. Studies show that on an average a computer desk possesses 400 times more bacteria than a toilet seat. The space where you rest your hand has 10,000,000 bacteria.
One study found that participants who wiped their desk items had 99.9% reduction in bacterial level within 2 days. Keep your work desk neat and organized. Tidy it up at the end of each day for five minutes.
4. Float Your Way To Good Health
Staying well-hydrated is vital for your productivity, energy levels, and overall health. Water also helps you stay alert and refreshed and promote clear thinking. Buy a large bottle, keep it at your desk and refill throughout the day.
5. Stop Touching Your Face
Common cold causing germs spread via droplets in the air, from coughing and sneezing. However, they can also sit on the surface of your skin. The flu virus can live up to 8 hours on your skin and the common cold virus up to 3 hours.
The best practice to avoid infection is to avoid touching your face directly after coming into contact with someone. Keep some hand sanitizer to clean your hands and tea tree oil wipes for cleaning your face, so as to prevent skin infection.
6. Manage Stress Properly
Most of us live a fast-paced life that can feel hectic at times. To be more effective and to work healthily, it is important to learn to manage your stress levels properly. Find what works for you and take time for it, whether it’s an occasional spa day, a good book or spending time with your family.
On an average, we spend 92,120 hours of our life at work. The way we act at work can directly affect our health and welfare. If you are an employee, you must know that staying healthy benefits you in a number of ways: fewer missed work days, less stress and greater productivity.
Staying healthy is beneficial for your pockets too, in the form of health insurance premiums and lower health care costs. So it’s worth investing a little bit of time in good health and hygiene practices in order to minimize the risk of catching the inevitable cough and cold that goes around the office.
(Guest post by: Evie Dawson who is a fitness coach and health writer based in Boston, MA. Her passion is to encourage others to rediscover their lifestyle and get inspired for organic living.)