You have a good job. Your dream job, even. At work, you are a titan of industry. But at home…You feel tired and fatigued. Stressed and out of shape.
Unfortunately, successful careers aren’t always conducive to healthy lifestyles. The busier you get, the harder it becomes to find the time for activities that are good for you. In this article, we take a look at how you can maintain a healthy lifestyle even with a demanding career.
Nutrition is often chalked up as a luxury for people with time. In a world where unhealthy options are literally called “fast food,” this isn’t surprising. Creating a good nutrition plan can be time-consuming, particularly in the beginning when you don’t know what you are doing.
However, there are many resources out there to get you started. It’s also worth noting that avoiding bad foods doesn’t have to take much time at all (unless you are truly too busy to say “and I would like that salad dressing on the side please,”).
Good nutrition is mostly about having a plan and sticking to it as closely as you can both when you are on the go, and in social situations.
Consider starting a meal planning routine. For example, on Sunday mornings, spend an hour putting together a few simple, highly nutritious meals you can take to work for lunch the next few days. Not only does this help you avoid restaurant food but it also makes it easier to plot out the rest of your nutritional decisions as they pop up throughout the week.
It’s been said that if you don’t have time for thirty minutes of meditation a day, you need to do it for an hour. That may not be a prescription that works for everyone. However, it is worth considering an activity that takes you out of the grind of your routine and places you directly in the moment.
Meditation, mindfulness practices, and yoga are all good ways to focus on the exact moment you are in for a while.
Do I really need to schedule being in the moment?
Put it this way. Mindfulness is linked with reduced rates of stress, depression, and insomnia. Some people do it naturally. Others need help.
Pay Attention to Your Mental Health
A busy schedule can make it hard to focus on mental health. Not only does a demanding career create stress and anxiety, but they also keep people away from the activities that alleviate them. As you go about your day, take regular stock of your mental and emotional health.
If you are feeling stressed, anxious, or unhappy, it’s important not to postpone treatment. Speak with a professional to learn more about how you can make your mental health a priority even amongst a busy schedule.
One of the tricky things about a demanding career is that, well. They are demanding. During office hours, you might be ok with that. However, when the working day is over, it’s important to have a way to shut off. Otherwise, the time you spend with your friends and family can easily feel like a continuation of your time at the office as you field calls and respond to emails.
Smartphone technology makes it difficult to truly unplug from work. If you can keep your work email off your personal cell phone, it may help establish balance. Otherwise, disable push notifications, and alert coworkers and clients that you will not be able to respond to messages off the clock.
Doctors recommend at least thirty minutes of exercise every day. Unfortunately, less than 25% of Americans get it. Many don’t even come close. Not only is exercise good for your physical health, but it can also be a potent tonic against anxiety, depression, and insomnia.
Look for opportunities in your schedule to squeeze in a run or a workout. The average full-time worker has five hours of leisure time each day. If you can dedicate just ten percent of that time to exercise, it could make a substantial difference in your life.
If you are struggling with your mental, physical, or emotional health, it may be a good idea to communicate these concerns at work. Opening up can be scary, particularly if you worry it might cost you advancement opportunities.
Usually, this won’t be the case. Most businesses are well acquainted with employee burnout and workplace fatigue. They know that these are common causes of productivity lulls and employee turnover—neither of which are desirable for anyone.
Your business may even have resources directly designed to help employees live a balanced, healthy lifestyle.