“Do not ever let anyone make you feel like you don’t matter, or like you don’t have a place in our American story – because you do. And you have the right to be exactly who you are.” Michelle Obama

Tired of long days at the office? Are you still working weekends, to try and get ahead? If you answered yes, you aren’t alone. We live in a workaholic society. Which means, many people spend a lot of time at the office.

There is a price for working too much. You stop having fun and taking care of yourself. This can lead to burn out. This can affect your mental health and your attitude. We are seeing more and more burn out these days. This means there are many people out there, that aren’t having fun and enjoying life.

We just can’t have that. It’s time to make yourself a priority. This doesn’t mean that you will lose your job or family. I know a lot of you fear this. This also doesn’t mean that you go around treating others poorly.

Here are five tips to help you take care of yourself, and still kick ass at the office:

  1. First you have to believe it. You can start by visualizing or writing out the life you would like to have. Make sure you include things like, enough sleep and down time. Add things into your life that you enjoy. If you can’t think of any, start doing things you have always wanted to. Maybe, you would like to just stay home all day on Saturday. If that’s it, then do it.
  2. Focus on accomplishing just one task at a time. Multi-tasking is the buzz word these days in the business world. But, is it really possible? It’s actually not good for the brain. You aren’t meant to go all day. You need to learn to stop on your own. If you have a large project you are working on, break it down into smaller tasks. Make a list and cross off each task when you finish. By doing this, you will feel a sense of accomplishment. This will help you feel better and keep you motivated.
  3. Get moving. You are at your desk all day staring at your computer. This is not good for you. It’s hard on your eyes and body. You need to get up out of your chair every 90 minutes. You can go for a walk or do some light stretching. You can also do some deep abdominal breathing. This will help change the brain wave, and give you some more energy. You can always start the day by going to the gym or going for a run outside. Add natural light to your movement. Your body will appreciate the Vitamin D. 
  4. Eat healthy foods. We live in a fast food world. There are not many nutrients that your body needs in fast foods. You really want to stay away from them. Start your day with a nutritious breakfast. Make sure you have some protein. This will help make you feel full. Add a couple of healthy snacks to your day. Like, hummus and carrots, or nuts and fruit. You don’t want to go the whole day without eating. Make sure you take a break for lunch. That way when you get home you won’t want to binge. Binge eating is never good. It will lead to extra pounds that can be hard to take off. It’s best if you prepare your healthy snacks ahead of time. The next time you go to the grocery store, when you get home clean your fruits and vegetables. That way, they will be easy to get when you are hungry.
  5. And, last but not least there is always time. Everyone is in a rush to get to the top these days. I’m sure you’ve heard or read about all of the people that have been a success overnight. Some are true, and some are not. The important thing is, you trust in the process. We all have our own pace. Stay away from comparing yourself to others. This will only bring you down in the long run. There are many people that didn’t make it big until their, 40’s, 50’s, 60’s and so on. What’s important is that you don’t lose yourself along the way.

It’s really true, you can’t take care of others unless you have taken care of yourself. Start today by putting some of these habits into action. At first they may seem difficult, but after a while they will be easy. It’s alright if you relapse, just start the next day fresh. Don’t beat yourself up about the past.

Lianne Avila is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, in San Mateo, CA. She specializes in helping people reduce stress in their lives. For a free phone consultation please call or email (650) 892-0357 or lianne@LessonsforLove.com.

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