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3 healthy habits you should make and 4 you should break

Staying healthy in the office can be a serious challenge.  But it doesn’t have to be that way!

To make things easy, we’ve put together a list of 3 unexpected habits that will boost your workplace wellness and 4 habits that are preventing it.

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 Healthy Habits to Make:

1. Drink more water

Coffee is the energy-boosting drink of choice at most offices.  But did you know that water has energizing benefits too? Keep a pint of water by your desk at all times and drink frequently. Fatigue is one of the main symptoms of dehydration. Stay hydrated and stay stimulated.

2. Pop a piece of gum

Gum can do more than just freshen your breath (although that is important!) It also boosts cognitive performance and increases energy. Researchers suggest that chewing gum enhances performance due to “mastication-induced arousal,” meaning that just the act of chewing wakes us up and keeps us focused.

3. Clean your desk at the end of the day

Your creative process can be messy but your desk doesn’t have to be. Allot 10 minutes every evening to clean up your desk- put away any errant papers, tidy all of your cables, and toss your trash. The next morning you’ll arrive in a more peaceful working environment.

Unhealthy Habits to Break:

1. Arriving late to the office

Arriving late gets your day off to a hurried, stressful start.  Instead, try to arrive 30 minutes early so you can deliberately set your priorities and settle in before the office chaos crescendos.

2. Keeping a mile-long to-do list

Nothing feels quite as satisfying as checking items off your to-do list.  Conversely, nothing feels quite as daunting as seeing that you have a torrent of tasks left to complete.

Instead of making a protracted list of to-dos, start your day by identifying your one Most Important Task (MIT). Your MIT should always be specific and achievable. This simple act will give you a sense of purpose as you go about your workday.

3. Always saying yes

Most people feel overcommitted and overworked in the office. This leads to stress, fatigue, and anxiety. Get out of the habit of saying yes to obligations that don’t make sense for you. It can feel difficult to say no to your co-workers, but think of it in terms of opportunity costs.  Economist Tim Harford explains it this way, “everytime we say ‘yes’ to a request, we are also saying ‘no’ to anything else we might accomplish with the time. It pays to take a moment to think about what those things might be.”

4. Sitting in your office chair

Your office chair is seriously draining your office energy and creativity. This spring, do yourself a favor and replace your office chair with an upright seat. Doing so will keep your body engaged and your mind engaged, boosting productivity and performance.