Daily Self-Care Habits to Manage Stress in the Workplace
Black Enterprise Magazine July/August 2018 Issue

While many people equate self-care with a vacation or visit to the spa or hair salon, let’s be real. Indulging in these activities may feel good for a moment but it’s not an everyday reality. Self-care isn’t a one-time event, it’s a daily practice. It starts with being honest with yourself as well as those around you about what you need to be your best self every single day.

Here are six ways to manage stress in the workplace and make self-care a daily habit.

1. Ask for help

In between juggling a demanding career and family life, there’s one person who often gets left behind: you. Whether you’re pretending to have it all together or you joined “team no sleep” to get the work done, chances are this mentality is slowly killing you physically and emotionally. It’s also a recipe for depression, silly mistakes, and anxiety. So, learn how to ask for help. For instance, if your boss keeps piling work on you, you may want to have a one-one-one meeting with him/her and say, “I’d be happy to get the project plan done for you by 5 p.m. today, but I also have a proposal and staff meeting today. How would you like me to prioritize these things so I can meet your deadline?”

2. Delegate tasks

Growth comes through delegation, but remember there are levels to delegating tasks to your colleagues, employees, or even your family members. Discuss expectations, deadlines, and assign check-in points so you can make sure the work is being done to your specifications. Also, make sure the person has access to the resources and tools to succeed.

3. Let it go, and walk away 

From negative energy to toxic people and situations that make you feel small or inferior, everything doesn’t deserve an immediate response. Embrace your power to pause before you respond so you can consider the cost of engaging in negativity and choose your emotions wisely. Remember, there’s a difference between a response and a reaction. A reaction is typically an immediate emotion given to a situation without much thought. On top of everything else, sometimes our emotions are unreliable and our feelings aren’t facts.

4. Say no

When you say YES to someone, make sure you’re not saying NO to yourself.

5. Trust yourself

Many times we beat ourselves up for not knowing an answer with absolute certainty. But here’s the thing, certainty is the enemy of growth. Give yourself permission to make the best decision with the information you  have right now. Even if things don’t go as planned, remind yourself: I didn’t lose, I learned.

6. Put yourself on your calendar

Schedule yourself for meditation or five minutes of gratitude. With the mindfulness app, you can schedule five minutes of meditation.

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