Stop workplace boredom and stress from ruining your diet

by Ali on February 25, 2008

Mondays aren’t usually the cheeriest day in the office. Chances are that you’ve heard (or said) one of the following today:

  • “Yawn, I’m so bored.”
  • “Argh, I’m so stressed.”

Neither the tedium nor the pressure of work is going to disappear as easily as a handful of chocolates, though…

Beating boredom

Those of us with less than thrilling day-jobs inevitably find the clock dragging at times. Around three in the afternoon is often a low point; how can there still be two hours left to go?

At moments like this, a warm drink always seems a good idea (if only to kill five minutes standing by the kettle). And what better to go with a brimming mug than one of those cookies so kindly brought in by a colleague…

Instead of reaching for the snacks, though, try some of the following:

  • Tackle the backlog: crack on with all those non-urgent, non-important tasks that just keep getting put off
  • See if you can give a colleague a hand: offer to take on one of their more mundane tasks, and they’ll be hugely grateful.
  • Talk to your boss: if you’re consistently sitting around with nothing to do at work, it’s not good for your or your employer. Can you take on more responsibilities?
  • Look for a new job: drastic, but if your current role is one you could do in your sleep, it might be time to move on.

Stopping stress

Some of you doubtlessly gave a hollow, mirthless laugh as you skimmed past the above paragraphs. Maybe you wish your job was boring – as it is, you’re constantly rushing around, struggling to keep up with everything.

It can be very tempting to reach for the nearest source of chocolate on a bad day, or to “treat yourself” for successfully finishing a difficult task. Instead, try:

  • Delegate: maybe you’ve got a couple of colleagues who don’t have enough work and would welcome a chance to try something new.
  • Prioritise: what really needs to be done? The quickest way to get a task off your to-do list is to abandon it completely.
  • Talk to your boss: don’t struggle on in silence, if you consistently have too much work, or if the work is very intense and stressful.
  • Get some exercise: make a point of taking your full lunch break and leaving the office, perhaps for a brisk walk or quick gym session.

(Photo above by aindschie)

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