Top 10 Self-Care Practices You Can Do At Work

No matter where you work—home, hospital or hotel—and no matter how you feel about it, work is work. It’s stressful at times. Or maybe all the time. You choose to do the work which means you choose the stress. But how often are you consciously managing that stress (besides with a glass of wine or beer at night)?

It’s easy to push on through, until it’s not. Stress inevitably builds up. And the best way to manage it is in the moment—at work—as best you can. Here are the top 10 self-care activities you can do at work to keep stress under control consciously.

10 Self-Care Practices to Do At Work

1) Conscious Breathing

Conscious breathing is a vital practice in presence and relaxation. When you consciously focus on your breath you bring your attention and presence back to this moment. It’s a drastic change from the future and past living we are often engaged in. Future planning, future fretting and even future excitement. Contrast that with past regrets, past nostalgia and past anxiety. It’s easy to do and probably habitual for many. Take a conscious breath from time to time to draw yourself back into this moment—the only one there is.

2) Essential Oils

Aromatherapy has long been used for all kinds of ailments, especially in eastern medicine. But western research is beginning to catch up. The subtle yet effective use of essential oils can reduce and alleviate stress and anxiety to improve your mood and your day. Use lavender for calm and relaxation or grapefruit or bergamot for an energy boost and an uplifted mood.

3) Meditation

While conscious breathing certainly is a form of meditation, a formal meditation can increase your awareness and presence. On your lunch break take as little as five minutes to calm your mind, slow your breathing and focus on right now. You can use a guided meditation audio to melt away stress and clear your mind for the rest of your work day. Guided meditations are also the perfect way to unwind at the end of a day.

4) Nature Walks

Sunshine uplifts moods and nature calms your mind. If you have a walking trail or sidewalk near your work, then take a few minutes to get fresh air and soak up some sun. Let the breeze blow away your stress. Allow the vibrant colors of nature to give you a boost of energy. If you can’t go for a walk, eat your lunch or snack outside. Whatever it takes, let nature be your healer.

5) Hot Tea

By the time afternoon rolls around, you may be ready for a cup of coffee. But instead of dosing yourself with more caffeine and sending your adrenals on another roller coaster, opt for a calming cup of tea. Try chamomile or another stress-relieving blend. Let the soothing tea calm your nerves. If you need the pick-me-up, then opt for a citrus flavor or green tea. Use a favorite mug to bring about feelings of warmth and happiness. Anything to give you the good vibes when you need them most.

6) Yoga

Yoga at work? You bet. Find a grassy spot under a tree. Use the two foot by four foot space behind your office chair. Whatever space you have available. Try a sun salutation. Or do a simple combination of standing forward bend, wide leg forward bend, warrior one on both sides and eagle both sides. Add a few mild backbends from a standing position to even it out and you can feel instantly better.

7) Alone Time

If you’re in the business of talking to people, then alone time shouldn’t be underrated. It’s essential—even for a people person—to get time and space with one’s self. Alone time keeps you in touch with yourself. From this place of personal power you can make empowered choices.

8) Laughter

Laughter heals. Good belly laughs elevate your energy and encourages a positive mental attitude. Seek out funny people. Be a funny person. Or turn to the internet for a plethora of memes and videos. Or a personal favorite—autocorrect fails.

9) Read to Inspire

If you’re feeling amotivational, then inspiration may be in order. If you’ve lost touch with your “Why,” then inspired reading can help you to realign your focus and energy. Subscribe to daily or weekly email newsletters like notes from the universe by Mike Dooley. Or find a good book that can give you an inspirational pick-me-up. The daily grind of work can make us so narrow focused that we lose sight of the bigger picture. A dose of inspirational reading helps you to stay on course.

10) Nap

Many companies have adopted a napping room to promote naps among their workers. Sleep is powerful in helping to restore concentration, visual acuity, reflexes and much more. A power nap lasting between 15-30 minutes can be the perfect boost you need to be awake and alert for afternoon meetings or client calls. Unless, of course, naps don’t agree with you.

Final Thoughts

Self-care at work can drastically improve your mood and energy levels. Often times our at-home self-care practices get left behind when we walk through the doors of our day-to-day j-o-b or start work at home. But it’s these very practices that will sustain you when times get tough. No work, no matter how passionate you are about it, will be stressful at times. Welcome any one or all of these self-care practices into your daily routine to nurture yourself and make the most of each day.

Photo Credit: Unsplash


Marie W
Marie W5 months ago


joan silaco
joan silaco11 months ago


Marge F
Marge F11 months ago

Thank you for posting this interesting article.

Marge F
Marge F11 months ago

Thank you for posting this interesting article.

Richard A
Richard A11 months ago

Thank you for this article and tips.

Cindy M. D
Cindy M. D11 months ago

Great article full of realistic advice. I am a firm believer that laughter is the best medicine. I also meditate often and it is a game changer.

Julia S
Julia S11 months ago

Thank you!

Christina K
Christina Klein11 months ago

Very good! Don´t forget to smile and to breathe!

Patricia D
Patricia D11 months ago

Someone once said laughter is the best medicine!

Elisabeth H
Elisabeth H11 months ago

nice, thanks