Practicing Self-Care Together
Updated: Apr 29, 2022
Written by Vanessa Barajas, Program Coordinator at Work2Live
We talk about self-care a lot because we cannot emphasize enough the benefits that come with it. I’m not going to list the benefits because I know you know them. Self-care is best known as an individual practice to improve your own emotional, physical, mental and spiritual health. However, too much time in individual practice of anything can lead to feelings of isolation and disconnection, especially now, as we begin to emerge from an extended period of mandated isolation. It is our responsibility to take care of ourselves, and sometimes, spending time with others is a part of that.
Research shows that human connections are critical for addressing the effects of stress, anxiety, burnout, and other forms of workplace distress. So let's build some human connection into practices that are typically done solo, and try practicing some group self-care in the workplace! Here are some ideas that you can incorporate with your team at work.
Meditation. This can be short yet effective. To do a meditation, find a guide, either by choosing a team member with a soothing voice, or listening to a guided meditation video. If the entire team isn’t together in-person send a link to a short ten minute Zoom call.
Stretch breaks. This encourages employees to take a break and move around. You could schedule a guided ten minute stretch where teammates meet up in person or on a video call to stretch together.
Affirmation of the Day. An affirmation is a short, powerful statement. They allow you to consciously be in control of your thoughts. When you say or think about the affirmation statement, it becomes the thought that shapes your reality. At the beginning or end of each team meeting, you could have a different team member share an affirmation with the team to promote positive energy.
Water Drinking Challenge. This will help teams stay hydrated throughout the workday. At work, teammates should aim to drink at least five cups of water or two and a half bottles of water. To track how much water each person has drank, you could start a group text to instruct everyone to text when they finished one bottle of water and then again when they've finished a total of two and a half bottles before leaving work. At the end of the work day, team members who drink all five cups of water win the challenge. For extra fun, you can hold a raffle with this pool of names.
Group check-ins. This simple exercise consists of posting regular check-in questions in a group text. You can post a question such as “what are you most enjoying working on right now?” or “what are you excited about this week?” or “what are you struggling with currently?” This reminds everyone that they have access to a community and support system.
Coworking hour. For telecommuters, a coworking hour can help battle the distance and foster camaraderie. At least once a month, plan an hour where teammates can meet up on a video call to ask for advice on work topics, learn a new skill, or work together in silence.
Attend a wellness/self-care webinar. Knowing that your teammates are with you and support each other on the journey to well being can be very powerful. Work2Live Well is having a four-part lunchtime series beginning April 14th. This series is a chance for you to apply self-care practices live with us! You can register on our website https://www.work2livewell.org/