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Did you know that the average American spends in a lifetime around 90,000 hours at the office? Let that sink in for a minute.
It’s so easy to get caught up in the daily grind of office work that we allow unhealthy habits to slip into our routine without even realizing it. More often than not, we rid ourselves of long-term health and happiness by making poor choices.
More and more companies are stressing the importance of office ergonomics in order to keep their employees healthy reducing time off and ultimately increasing office productivity. You'd think that there would be a heightened awareness within the workforce to work healthier as well.
With the start of 2020 now upon us, it is the perfect opportunity to take a step back and examine some of the bad habits you may have been doing at work and change yourself to a better and healthier you.
Here are 5 of the most common office health mistakes that you’re probably already making at work.
Office Health Mistakes
1. Sitting for Long Periods of Time
It has been well-documented that sitting too much is bad for your health. Sadly, the typical office worker may spend up to a staggering 15 hours per day sitting, only to get home and sit around some more.
To combat the negative effects of a sedentary lifestyle, it’s important to incorporate movement in your workday. Doing simple stretches and exercises every now and then can work wonders for your cardiovascular health. This article speaks to 8 different ergonomic exercises you can do while at work.
As a general rule of thumb, it’s a good idea to get up and move for every 30 minutes you sit down. Whether you’re stretching, getting a glass of water, or just walking around the hallways, keeping yourself active is a surefire way to become healthier and more productive.
2. Not Staying Hydrated
Another one of the office health mistakes is neglecting to hydrate themselves. It’s so easy to get caught up with work and forget to drink water every once in a while.
Our brain is an amazing tool that we use to achieve amazing results. However, without proper hydration, you might not perform at your best.
According to UC Davis, Your brain is about 75% water. When your brain is functioning on a full reserve of water, you will be able to think faster, be more focused, and experience greater clarity and creativity.
To avoid some of the mental symptoms of dehydration that include brain fog, afternoon fatigue, and focus issues, it’s a good idea to drink water on a regular basis in order to maintain your brain like a well-oiled machine.
Fill up a YETI Rambler 20 oz Tumbler a couple of times a day and keep it on your desktop. It will not only remind you to hydrate, it will keep the water cool as well.
3. Poor Posture
Slouching is something that most office workers are guilty of, as many tend to lean forward unconsciously while working behind a computer.
Based on this study done by BioMed Research International, slouching may be responsible for reducing your lung capacity. This is because the amount of oxygen reaching your body tissues and organs like the brain decreases.
The best way to go about this is to sit in a neutral posture, with your back straight. Remember to mind your elbows and wrists, making sure that your arms form a 90-degree angle to promote the natural positioning of the hands. Acquiring a high value office chair with arm rests will allow you to maintain the proper posture. Another popular option these days is using a standing desk during working hours.
By sitting or standing with the proper posture, you’ll be sure to have better breathing and achieve maximum comfort while you work behind your desk.
4. Not Blinking Often Enough
This may sound like a rather strange office health mistake but your eyes blink less when you are staring at your computer. This is because we tend to focus on the text on the screen.
On average, humans blink at a rate of fifteen blinks per minute, however, this number drops to about five when looking at screens.
As tears evaporate quickly, blinking becomes very important to hydrate your eyes in order to prevent irritation. To help reduce dry eyes, The Mayo Clinic suggests implementing the 20-20-20 rule. You can also blink ten times slowly, once every 30 minutes. This will make sure that your eyes stay moist and lubricated.
5. Poor Diet
While maintaining a healthy diet can be a challenge in the workplace, poor choice of food are one of the leading causes of decreased productivity. In most offices or work environments, sugary and highly processed foods are the norm, especially for special occasions.
Studies have reported that most junk food is bad for your brain, that it can impact your memory and mood, all the while increasing the risk of dementia. It is estimated that dementia will affect more than 65 million people worldwide by 2030.
However, this doesn't mean you must avoid all these foods completely. One of the best things you can do for your productivity and health is to follow a balanced diet, rich in fresh whole foods. Packing your own lunch every day is a good idea to make sure you get your nutrition in check while avoiding the afternoon vending machine run.
One awesome option is to pick up a Crock-Pot Food Warmer. This unique office accessory will allow you to heat up leftovers at your desk from the healthy meal you cooked the night before.
And there you have it, the 5 most common office health mistakes most people make at the office. If you have done your part to avoid these pitfalls, good job! You’re definitely on your way to a better and more fulfilling work year.
Remember, you are your greatest investment. When health is absent, wealth becomes useless. So take care of yourself every day and work towards becoming your most productive self.
Author Bio – Jason Tjugito is the SEO Content Writer for officesolutionpro.com, a website dedicated to office ergonomics and productivity. He is a copywriter, translator, and a location independent entrepreneur.