Optimizing your productivity to reach your goals, such as finding a job or nailing an important project to impress your boss, isn’t about overworking yourself to the limit. To get the most out of your work, you need to make time to care for yourself.
You may be able to work in overdrive to achieve short-term success, but it won’t be sustainable in the long-term if you continually ignore your overall well-being. There will always be another challenge in your career that you need to be ready for, and in order to be prepared for success you need to ensure that you’re prioritizing your personal wellness as much as the work at hand.
Here are three reasons why your well-being plays an important role in your continued career success:
Refreshes your perspective
Working hard or hardly working? It may seem counter-intuitive, but giving yourself the space to take a break from work isn’t only good for you, but good for your work output as well. Breaks are shown to increase your motivation in reaching long-term goals, refresh your perspective, and boost your productivity.
Breaks are good for your productivity because they shift brain activity away from your prefrontal cortex (the area of your brain that focuses on solving problems at work) towards other areas of the brain instead. This rest period allows your prefrontal cortex to renew focus and recharge, allowing you to keep working at your best.
Enhances your image
Maintaining the right professional image is essential in forming a positive impression with your supervisors, co-workers, and other potential industry connections. Often, the impression that your image projects to others is a deciding factor in their assessment of your competencies at work. Keeping up with your wellness routine and managing your appearance is a subtle way to get ahead just through looking the part and building on your confidence.
The best advice is to establish a long-term routine that enhances your strengths and addresses your insecurities. This means covering all of your wellness bases – eating right, getting a proper night’s sleep, scheduling time to exercise, and optimizing your grooming routine. It’s essential to adjust your grooming routine to your specific areas of concern, whether it’s finding a proactive cold sore treatment during the winter months or adjusting to a lightweight moisturizer during the summer to prevent breakouts. Going the extra mile won’t go unnoticed by your peers, and also boosts your confidence level at work.
Overworking yourself without regard to your personal wellness can cause you to be overwhelmed by work-related stress, leading to burnout at work and a dip in your performance. High levels of stress are also shown to cause anxiety, lack of motivation, and fatigue.
Managing stress goes beyond taking a break, and requires you to find specific stress-management activities that work for you. Active strategies are generally more effective than inactive strategies in the long-term, meaning you’ll manage your stress more effectively through a form of physical activity or an engaging venting session with your friend as opposed to passively watching television or browsing the Internet.
Having a strategy to keep your stress at a manageable level enables you to keep your eye on your career goals and the work needed to achieve them, rather than becoming burned out and losing your motivation.