Studies show that for 46% of adults, their main cause of stress is their workload. While there are other ways to alleviate stress in the workplace, like prioritizing your projects every day, staying organized and being able to say no when you need to, physical exercise is high on the list.
When you exercise, your body releases endorphins, which reduce stress levels, among other things. When you are less stressed you are better able to manage your employees and be emotionally intelligent when dealing with problems. You are less irritable, have greater mental focus and creativity and can better prioritize tasks because you can think more clearly.
If lack of time remains a constant excuse, try high-intensity interval training (HIIT) or an app with quick, easy, on-the-go routines you can do almost anywhere. HIIT workouts are short, but really get your heart rate up. And by the way, if the thought of trying to fit exercise into your schedule stresses you out, that's a hint that you should make some changes to reduce your stress levels.
Exercise boosts brain activity
Does your brain feel like it just doesn't go as fast as you need it to sometimes? Maybe after 3 p.m. you feel like you need extra coffee to keep going? Instead of having caffeine, exercise. Exercising pumps more blood into the brain, helping you be more alert and focused. This means you will be better-equipped to work on a difficult project later in the day if necessary, assist a new client or employee and generally accomplish more during the day.
Check to see if there is a gym close to your office, where you could use your lunch hour to work out for at least 20 minutes. Or if the idea of exercising and then going back to work doesn't appeal to you, go to the gym before work or before going home. If gyms aren't your thing, find a route where you can walk around the block at your office. Take the stairs up and down three times a week rather than the elevator. Find ways at 3 p.m. to boost your energy rather than reach for the caffeine.
Exercise can help you reach the next level
Are you working towards a promotion? Or are you trying to transition into a new career? Mentally you want to be at your best for whatever challenge lies ahead career-wise. Exercise helps you with that by increasing your brain's capacity to prioritize tasks and it can improve your memory. You'll be better able to draft up the agenda for a meeting or handle the interview for your next job or promotion. You'll have the mindset to mediate conflict between employees or a major transition that is occurring in your organization, allowing you to demonstrate your leadership abilities.
If you are trying to decide on a career that would better suit you, you need to be able to objectively prioritize what is important to you and what kind of tasks give you personal fulfillment. Being calm, sharp and confident while doing that will enable you to be more successful at the task.