The Role of Self Care in Productivity

Melissa Steginus
A free video tutorial from Melissa Steginus
Author, Speaker, Productivity Coach & Wellness Specialist
4.3 instructor rating • 1 course • 8,249 students

Learn more from the full course

Self Care for Productivity

Create Your Action Plan for Wellness at Work

01:17:32 of on-demand video • Updated

  • Redefine self-care and productivity based on your needs and ideals
  • Understand the necessity of self-care for wellness and productivity
  • Assess where you spend your time and energy (and where you want to)
  • Learn and implement the 3 pillars of a productive plan
  • Redesign your day-to-day schedule to reflect your priorities
  • Develop ways to manage stress and build healthy habits
  • Gain practical techniques for maintaining and evaluating your progress
  • And more!
English [Auto] This whole idea of creating your own definition and framework actually takes into account the first step I teach when it comes to self care which is building awareness in order for you to determine what matters to you and to make you're doing purposeful and productive. You have to first check in with yourself ask questions gain awareness of what's important to you and then assess how to implement and prioritize those things into your day in life. This process of introspection for awareness is at the root of both self care and productivity. And no this isn't a coincidence. It's because the two are intertwined. Let me explain. We've determined that your purpose for doing something is at the root of your long term success. Breaking that down further. How do you determine your purpose. What is at the root of the why. Well how do you make any decision. Think about it. You go about your day to day. Then you face something new could be a challenge. Let's call it an opportunity. You assess this new opportunity. Considering how it might impact your current circumstances if you're like most people you weigh the short and long term pros and cons and make your decision accordingly. Now what is the common factor in every step of that decision making process. It's the person making the decision and this is where self care comes in. I've already told you that awareness is at the root of self care. It's essentially the first half of the word awareness of yourself with this self awareness and connection your decision making process. Looks like the one I just explained but with out a healthy relationship with yourself your decision making will be entirely external. Now what do I mean by that. When that new opportunity comes flying through your window your thought process will look a lot differently than it did in our previous example. You might ask yourself should I do this. How made accepting this opportunity impact my partner or my boss. What would my friends think if I pass this up now of course we naturally consider others perceptions when we wrestle with major life decisions. This is because we don't exist in a vacuum. We impact and are impacted by the people involved in our lives. But it's important to remember that the decisions you make are your decisions and without checking in with yourself and what you might want or need. You'll find that you start doing your work and living your life for everyone but yourself. That's not productive. It's not sustainable and it's certainly not fulfilling. So what would things look like with self care in the picture. Well first of all with a greater awareness of your personal wants and needs decision making becomes a whole lot easier and more meaningful. It's much easier to trust yourself to make a major decision when you trust yourself in general but the role of self care in a productive workday and lifestyle isn't just about decision making. Let's expand into wellness in general. We've determined that you are the vehicle and that self care is your fuel. It's what you do to keep you going. Without it you're likely to hit the brakes or hopefully not spin out of control. And yes that's my segway into stress and burnout and I don't mean burnout in the sense of spinning your wheels doing doughnuts in the parking lot. See many of us have what I call the superhero delusion. This is the idea that you can do it all save the world and still be home for dinner. I mean that sounds great right. What's so bad about that. Well I'll tell you this mentality and lifestyle often leads to stress bodily or mental tension caused by physical mental or emotional factors. Compassion fatigue which is emotional or physical erosion occurring from lack of or inability to refuel and regenerate and eventually burnout physical or mental collapse caused by overwork or stress burnout is the end result of too much energy output and not enough energy Self Invested. In other words you've burned too much fuel then you've put in your tank. But how did this happen. What might have caused this. Let's look at some of the possibilities within the workplace. High expectations both others and your own inability to set boundaries pushing yourself too hard mentally physically and emotionally heavy workloads and long hours time pressures limited resources competing priorities and other organizational pressures. There can b a lot of contributing factors. You might also add in personal relationship issues financial concerns and a world of other stressors. Some days you just blink and it feels like you've gone from full down to empty. Now there's a big difference between stress and burnout. We all experience stress in one way or another burnout. On the other hand is the result of a long and heavy buildup of stress that has been repressed or ignored. It's the collapse the breaking point the feeling of just throwing your arms up and saying I'm done your self care plan and practice will help you better manage stressors and prevent you from getting to that breaking point. So let's gain some awareness here to take preventative measures what might be some signs that you're running low on fuel. Well let's start with the physical. What you can see and feel fatigue loss of appetite difficulty falling asleep or changes in your sleeping habits restlessness headaches changing and eating habits increased blood pressure and susceptibility to illness emotional increase mood swings decreased motivation. Maybe you feel irritable isolated your relationship dynamics are changing feel inadequate fragile vulnerable and unable to cope. And cognitive. Maybe you feel confused you have difficulty making decisions solving problems. Memory blanks difficulty paying attention or staying focused. It's decreased productivity on all fronts. Again self care is your most powerful tool to combat these things to deal with the symptoms and identify what's at the root. Ideally yourself care practice will be proactive in helping to prevent these symptoms and if not it will help you to reduce their severity. Self care is the way that you cope with the stresses in and outside of the workplace so that you don't go home and develop a nasty habit that might harm you or someone else. Keeping yourself well is also your best method for working productively. Think about what your workday looks like when you're not feeling your best. Your energy is low your ability to focus is even lower and the quality of your work suffers. You might be easily distracted or directing a bit too much energy towards social media email or just plain old paper pushing unhealthy habits and lifestyles reduce your productivity cost your business which if you're self-employed is costing you and creates cyclical patterns of dysfunction and general dissatisfaction. Let's use a real life example. Sarah works nine to five in a fast paced environment. Her mother is unwell so Sarah visits and cares for her outside of work hours. Sarah's husband is struggling to keep up with the kids in the evenings without Sarah present. Sarah feels guilty frustrated and completely exhausted her level of stress and emotional overwhelm is up here and it's affecting her sleep which then affects her focus at work. So it's Friday afternoon and Sarah's boss calls her into the office to address a few of her administrative errors. How do you think Sarah might have responded given your current circumstances. How would you have handled that situation. I used this example to challenge the myth that self care is selfish really does Sarah's well-being only affect Sarah. Absolutely not. Sarah's personal wellness affects her family the people she works with her clients her friends the clerk at the grocery store and the cafe where Sarah gets her coffee. So know that your personal wellness is not only about you and know that by making a positive self investment you also benefit those around you. Life can come in waves and your well-being affects and is affected by those waves through small ripples of self care and decision making. The key to both self care and productivity is focusing on the ripples that you create and control your behaviors and decisions. Productivity is all about time and energy optimization right. Paying attention to your intention and self care is exactly that just in a bit of a different context. It's all about reinvesting energy into yourself so that you have energy to expend to send outward and productive ripples and waves. Building Healthy habits at work and otherwise starts with awareness gaining a knowledge of what you want where you want to invest your energy and why the Y determines the how in the next video you'll begin to shift into the how you'll identify your starting point and actually assess various elements of your life and self before you jump in. Take a minute to liked on the definitions of productivity and self care that you've created so far. How little self care help you manage those day to day stresses to prevent fatigue and burnout. And who else is affected by your personal illness. Make any adjustments you feel necessary to your framework before moving forward. And I'll see you in the next video.