Most of us sit in front of a computer all day long. We work hard and we have no idea what effect the long hours of typing are having on our body. This post will look at the most important things you can do for your health at work.
The 8 most important tips for your health at work
1. Look away from the screen
Your eyes are very badly affected by how long you stare at that bright screen. We stop blinking and start staring which makes our eyes strain and dry out. Make sure you look away from the screen and close them for a few seconds every few minutes.
2. Sit on a fitness ball
Here in Australia many corporations are now making their employees sit on fitness balls instead of chairs. Why? Because they are better for your posture and therefore your neck and back benefit.
The fitness ball helps you to sit upright but it also moves when you move which stop you from sitting in a bad position for extended periods of time. Go out and get one. They aren’t expensive.
3. Get a tennis ball and save your hands
It is really important to give your fingers, wrists and hands a break from resting on the keyboard all day. Some very serious and chronic injuries can develop from too much typing. A tennis ball is a great way to do this. Every time you need to think you should grab the ball and give it a few quick squeezes. This will do wonders for your joints and muscles.
4. Watch your posture
Leading on from the fitness ball tip you need to learn how to sit correctly. Take notice of how you are sitting now. I bet your chin is drooped forward and your spine curving backwards. I bet your shoulders and hunched and your wrists are flat on the keyboard.
Try to sit up reasonably straight with your bottom on the edge of the chair and your feet flat on the ground. Try to pull your shoulders out to the sides (not backwards) and make sure your chin and neck are upwards and in the right spot.
If you sit with bad posture you will suffer many negative health effects. Pinched nerves, back pain, headaches, tiredness and more. Sit up.
5. Watch the coffee intake
It is very easy to slip into a bad habit at work. Most often this bad habit involves coffee or some other caffeine related beverage. We drink a cup to wake up and then we have a cup every time we get stressed. Before you know it you have had five or six cups and you are addicted to coffee.
The thing about this is that it is not only bad for your body, it teaches you addiction. After coffee comes junk food or perhaps a glass of wine to take the “edge” off. If you drink coffee at work you should take an honest look and see if you are abusing it. You don’t want it to get out of control.
6. Actively work against stress
Make no mistake, high levels of stress are killing you. People in highly stressful jobs have a higher chance of developing heart problems and even cancer. So how stressed are you?
Make sure you are actively managing your stress. Don’t just wish it would go away, start taking steps to fix it. It is something that you need to work hard to get under control.
Some things you can do include eating healthier food, getting enough sunlight, socializing with happy people and so on. For more tips take a look at this post on avoiding depression at work.
7. Make friends
It is important that we have people at work that we can chat to and bounce ideas off. Working in a lonely environment is not good for anyone’s health. You become sad, depressed and your stress is more difficult to manage.
Friends are so important for ordinary people. We need that human contact to express ourselves and to make ourselves feel a part of some kind of community. Take a look at this post on making friends at work.
Making friends also has many “selfish” benefits. If you have a few good friends around you it is often possible to palm off some work to them or get some help when you need it on those busy days.
8. Keep glare off the screen
It is really important to make sure your computer screen does not have direct sunlight hitting it. This is very bad for your eyes and will give you headaches and eventually damage your eyes.
Conclusion on health at work
We spend more time at work than we realize. If we don’t take care of our health while we are there we will not be healthy. Make sure you are doing everything you can to keep your body and mind in good shape.