When you’re a customer service representative, you get to work with people on a daily basis and help your employer grow. It can be entertaining and satisfying, but like any job it’s important to stay healthy while doing it. Here are a few things you can do to keep your mind and body in tip top condition.
1. Walk Around
Studies show sitting all day could actually shorten your life expectancy. Roughly 86 percent of American workers sit for six hours a day or more at work. Then, many of them go home and sit even more. This constant lack of movement puts you at higher risk for cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes, musculoskeletal diseases, and other serious health conditions.
However, these health risks are reserved for people who don’t take action. You may not be able to reduce the time you sit at work, but you can do a few simple things to make your situation better. For starters, get up for two-minute moving breaks at least once an hour. You can also try to change positions at least once every 10 minutes to wake up your metabolism and prevent muscle spasms. After work, hit the gym. If you don’t have the time or money, take a jog or brisk walk outside, bike or walk to work, or try at-home workout videos. Exercising regularly is one of the best ways to counteract the effects of sitting.
2. Sit Up Straight
Even if you can’t change how much time you spend sitting, you can still make sure you have good posture while doing it. It’s not something most of us think about as we type at our computers, but the effects can be severe in time. Prolonged poor posture can cause permanent structural damage, including bulging disks, weakened muscles, a misshapen spinal cord, and other debilitating conditions that require serious treatment.
But good posture is something that can be learned. Those who practice good posture through mindfulness at work see significant benefits, including reduced neck and back pain, more energy, fewer headaches, and longer-lasting bone health. Here are some tips for better posture:
· Set a timer for every 30 minutes to remind yourself to sit up straight.
· Avoid crossing your legs at the knee when you’re sitting to minimize lower-back problems.
· Stand up at least once an hour to reset your posture.
· Invest in ergonomic office equipment that promotes better posture at your desk.
3. Develop a Sleep Schedule
Doctors recommend a minimum of seven hours of sleep per night for adults, but some people need closer to nine or ten hours to remain healthy. Unfortunately, nearly three-quarters of people say they suffer from sleep deprivation as a result of their jobs, and 23 percent have reported work-related insomnia. Lack of sleep is linked to a number of serious health conditions, including cancer risk, depression, weight gain, high blood pressure, compromised immune system, diabetes, and heart disease.
Better sleep is one of the easiest health concerns to fix. The first step toward improving your sleep is getting on a schedule. Plan a solid eight hours of sleep before you have to get up, and try to go to sleep at the same time every night. You can also increase the quality install blackout curtains to keep your room dark during the day, and eliminate distractions in the bedroom so you can sleep better.
4. Find Joy in Working
Your mental health is just as important as your physicality if you want to achieve a higher quality of life. Unfortunately, forty percent of workers report that their jobs are very stressful, which puts workers at a higher risk for depression, anxiety, and other mental issues.
Coping with work pressure is all about your attitude. Start by identifying things that bring you joy. You might focus on being more positive in your interactions or getting up every 20 minutes to move around. Many workers find joy in the occasional social break. During breaks and lunch time, seek a companion for conversation. Revel in these moments, and think positively when feeling stressed.
As a customer service professional — or any employee who sits at a desk — you’re more in control of your mental and physical health than you might think. There’s no reason to settle for poor health when simple changes can keep you in tip-top shape for life.