Celebrating International Week of Happiness at Work
According to Indeed’s Work Happiness Score, workplace unhappiness impacts three out of four employees, negatively affecting their mental health and/or physical health.
As we typically spend the majority of our waking hours at work, our happiness at work can have a significant impact on our general life satisfaction and wellbeing. It is, therefore, important to make our happiness and wellbeing at work a priority.
Increasing happiness at work can mean taking action to reduce stress and managing our work/life balance. Here are ten ways you could increase your happiness at work:
1. Take Intentional Relaxation Breaks
Burnout is real, but it is avoidable. Taking an intentional break means to switch your brain off from work during your break and intentionally do something relaxing instead. For example, you could take a five minute break to listen to a guided meditation, rest your eyes, read ten pages of a book, or water your office plants.
2. Nourish Your Support Network
Fostering work relationships helps to build a sense of community and belonging at work. Developing a strong support network that can provide guidance, encouragement and emotional support when needed.
3. Celebrate Your Achievements (and Others’ Too!)
There is a high correlation between being appreciated and work satisfaction. If you are a boss, you have the potential to earn more trust, loyalty, and commitment from your employees simply by recognizing them regularly for their work. If you are an employee, set the wheels in motion by recognising coworkers’ achievements and offering gratitude to your bosses. When appreciated, everyone’s productivity, creativity, and well-being increase, so let it start with you.
4. Advocate for Equal Opportunities
Encourage conversations about diversity and inclusion. Increasing diversity and inclusion in the workplace can address disparities, promote a more inclusive environment, and lead to a happier workplace for all. Encourage open discussions about disparities you observe, whether related to pay, promotions, or project assignments.
5. Flexible Working
Unless your employer currently offers this, suggest flexible working hours to suit your individual needs. Flexible working can greatly boost happiness and productivity by improving work/life balance.
6. Know Your Limits
Having an unmanageable workload is a recipe for stress and burnout. It can lead to unnecessary time off work and negatively impact physical and mental health. It is important to know your personal workload limits to be productive and manage your time effectively. Be honest with yourself and your colleagues; it is OK to say “no” and to re-delegate or re-prioritise tasks.
7. Embrace Lifelong Learning
There is always more to learn. Knowledge is power and can help you feel better equipped, more inspired, and happier at work. Invest in your professional development by attending webinars, workshops, conferences, events, or online courses. Our WISE members have access to regular webinars, events and workshops.
8. Maintain a Routine
Building a routine can help create structure and allow us to implement healthy, happiness-boosting habits. For example, waking up at the same time every day can help with sleep and our circadian rhythm. Booking re-occurring weekly meetings could help us feel more in control by knowing what to expect in our week.
9. Stay Organised
Feeling organised can look like de-cluttering your workspace, writing to-do lists, or communicating and delegating effectively. Organising your workload can make you feel more in control and on top of your schedule, decreasing stress levels while increasing motivation.
10. Get Moving
Having high energy levels can make us happier and more motivated. According to Harvard Medical School, moving more can help increase your energy levels. This happens through several mechanisms such as boosting oxygen circulation, creating an increase in energizing hormone levels, and improving sleep.
Creating a Culture of Happiness in the Workplace
Creating a positive culture of happiness in your workplace can look like implementing flexible working hours, increasing transparency and communication, or offering employee professional development training. The benefits range from increasing employee retention and attracting new talent, to improving brand association.
Become a More Inclusive Employer
WISE exists to deliver women-centered equity, diversity & inclusion solutions for the STEM sectors. There is also a wide range of exclusive training & workshops to help organisations be more inclusive overall. You can explore all training here, or enquire about WISE membership by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org