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Be the Boss of Your Life – Self-Care Tips for Career Women

Fa calendar 16 grey April 14, 2020   
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If you feel compelled to work, and you’re drowning; stop. It’s probably time to practice some self-care

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Photo Credit: Brooke Cagle

Another workweek over, yet you’re not really looking forward to the weekend.

Things have been a little rough lately – a little too hectic, and the long list of deadlines and tasks that need to be crossed off never seems to end. You’re overwhelmed. Then you tell yourself that this is normal. You’re an admin assistant studying to be a paralegal, or you're working towards that all-important managerial position. Stress is to be expected if you want to make something of yourself and achieve your career goals. And it doesn’t matter if you’re the boss of your own company, an accountant, a secretary, an engineer, or a nurse.

This is true. But it’s also true that, sometimes, us women tend to take on more than what we can handle, particularly when our ambitions are driving us on. We can’t say “no,” and before we know it, we’re stretched too thin and begin to break. And you know this all too well. You pay for it in different ways: you get sick, you lose patience and focus, start missing deadlines and snapping at people, and forget yourself.

Stop. Even if you feel compelled to work, and you’re drowning; stop. It’s probably time to practice some self-care. There’s only one you, and you’ve only got so much to give. If you’re tired, hungry and chronically stressed, do you think you’ll be able to give your best quality work? Probably not.

So, make time for yourself, and see if you can start integrating these self-care tips:

Get some sleep

It’s tempting to sacrifice a few hours of sleep to meet deadlines and finish pending tasks but do your best to avoid this. Lack of sleep keeps your stress levels elevated. Worse, it can lead to stress-related medical conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, unhealthy weight gain, depression, and anxiety. When you’re sleep deprived, your body doesn’t have time to recover and repair itself. You start making more mistakes too, as chronic sleeplessness also affects focus, learning and memory. For this, you should not only aim to get seven to eight hours of sleep but also establish regular waking and sleeping times.

Switch off from technology

How many times have we come across articles telling us that unregulated tech use is bad for our health? Aside from the blue light screens emit that interferes with our sleep and wakefulness cycle, scrolling through work emails is hardly relaxing. So, when you’re at home, make sure you stop using your gadgets. Keep these out of the bedroom and use an old-fashioned alarm clock to wake you up the next morning. Once your circadian rhythm is back to normal, you won’t even need an alarm clock to wake up at the right time.

Learn to proritize 

Doing this involves a whole host of things. At work, know what’s essential to your role, and say “no” to things that will interfere with your own work and other aspects of your life. If you decide to be healthier, you need to start weighing on your habits, too. Do you need that third or fourth cup of coffee? Should you exercise, meditate or practice yoga? Should you go for a massage and read a book, rather than staying up late mindlessly scrolling through social media? Would ice cream be better for you or a healthy salad you can prepare at home? You can have both, but always in moderation. Live your life mindfully, and recognize what’s important, so you can be more and do more.

These self-care tips are just the beginning. But once you implement these in your life, you’ll not only have more time to accomplish everything you need to do, but also learn to love yourself more.

 

   

About the author: Oli Kang is a working mum who has a passion for teaching and all things educational. With a background in marketing, Oli manages the digital channels and content at Courses.com.au

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