Sometimes it can feel like all we do is work, sleep, eat and repeat. With your busy schedule, how are you supposed to maintain your mental health? How can you get all of your work done when your anxiety is flaring up? How can you help every customer when you’re battling depression?
It can be very hard to keep your composure at work. It can be difficult to not burst into tears and hide in the corner. Am I speaking from personal experiences? Yes. Was it that obvious? Currently I work two customer service jobs and half the time I want to rip my hair out. Here are my tips to keep all your hair and your sanity.
1) Before Work
Before you go to work think about a story from a day or two ago. Use the story to start a conversation with every customer. Does it get redundant? Sure, but it cuts down on the socially awkward and anxiety inducing moments while helping customers.
2) At Work
Smile! Smile! Smile! That’s something you might recognize from your boss. The important thing to remember is that the point of working a job is to make money. Remember you’re probably off within eight hours. So, during your shift plaster a smile on your face even when the customer wants you to remake his blended hot chocolate because there’s not enough big ice chunks (I’m not making that up).
3) During Work
Breaks! Oh, thank heaven for breaks. If you are allowed ten minutes breaks for a lunch, I highly suggest practicing some breathing exercises. Go to the back room and unwind for a minutes. Compose yourself so you can manage the rest of your shift. If possible, try sitting in your car during your break. It gives you a better sense of separation from work.
It is possible that in a high stress level job you can lose sight of yourself. If it gets to the point that the work level increases your stress and worsens your mental illness, consider a few options. You can ask your boss to relieve some of your extra duties (if you have them). Maybe ask a coworker for some extra help. If there is no option for you, a reevaluation of your employment status may be necessary.
4) After Work
Unwind. This is essential for you to separate yourself from work. This tip is a little more personal because it just depends on what you like. You could take a hot bath, watch TV, read a book or play Mario Kart. My personal favorite is taking a nice hot cup of peppermint tea into the shower and singing my heart out!
We are all human and we all have bad days at work! With these tips, I hope you can spread the love and feel great doing it.
Here’s something to think about: What if the customer you are helping is also suffering from a mental illness? What if you being nice and thoughtful brightened their day? I think that would make it all worth it!