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The Trials and Tribulations of the Modern Office Routine
Studies show that the modern office routine could be contributing to a lack of motivation, poor health and low mood among employees.
Employee wellbeing is an important consideration for many offices around the world and is often a constant balancing act. However, research indicates that a few aspects of our office routine are likely having a negative effect on our wellness.
Snacking at work is reported to add around 1,300 calories to our weekly intake. Furthermore, 70% of the snacks we eat are provided for free, either provided by our employers or as treats brought in by colleagues. Typically the snacks we eat at work have little or no nutritional value and contain high volumes of fat and sugar. By providing more healthy snacks such as fruit and nuts and limiting naughty treats to once a fortnight we can help employees to maintain a healthy lifestyle and promote a good sense of wellbeing.
There is a direct link between the amount of time we spend sitting and the likelihood of early mortality. There are also many other issues that arise from spending long periods sat at desks such as aches and pains, eye strain and lower cognitive performance. It’s recommended that we get up from our desks at least every thirty minutes to stretch and break away from the usual office routine. While standing desks and sit-stand desks are an option, it is advised that this approach should be taken with caution.
Open plan offices and hot desking are becoming increasingly popular in modern office spaces. However, open plan offices and hot desk situations can lead to increased distractions. Studies show that distractions such as excessive noise, distinctive smells and having to deal with annoying co-workers can cause a huge drop in overall wellbeing and reduce overall productivity.
Regular meetings and excessive workloads and targets also take their toll on the employee psyche and are some of the biggest causes of increased blood pressure, higher stress and lack of motivation. We can also take these problems home with us – affecting our personal life and the amount of rest we get.
Finding a Solution
There are ways of reducing the impact the modern day office routine has on our wellbeing. Some suggestions include:
- Working smarter, not harder. Sometimes working fewer hours, taking regular breaks and employing time management techniques can improve productivity tenfold.
- Scheduling time to check emails and messaging can help you to avoid interruptions and remain focused on the task at hand.
- Planning things to do on lunchbreaks such as swimming, doing some sort of exercise or phoning a friend can help us to make the most of our breaks away from work. Taking the opportunity to avoid using a screen can also help.
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