SHA Magazine Health & Beauty
How to disconnect from work when you get home
Stress is responsible for 25% of sick leave in Spain.
According to data from the Spanish National Institute of Statistics, an estimated one out of every four workers are absent every day from in Spain. Although they’re not the only reasons, a fast-paced lifestyle chock full of stimuli, endless working hours, multitasking and the challenges of balancing work and personal life are the main causes of a large part of society’s inability to disconnect from professional responsibilities. Added to the fact that new technologies make it possible to turn turn any place into a branch of the office, the growing trend of working from home is blurring the line that traditionally separated work and free time, serving up the perfect cocktail that keeps our minds on work all day long.
As Cinthya Molina, psychologist at SHA Wellness Clinic explains, “the human body ends up getting used to this frenetic pace and when the time comes to stop and rest, we can’t do it because cortisol levels, which is the stress hormone, are still very high. This makes us feel upset and anxious. Even if the stressful stimulus disappears, the body needs three or four days to go back to its normal state. This translates into muscle overload, headaches, lack of concentration, apathy and problems in getting the necessary restorative rest, among many other symptoms”.
If we continue to dwell on work-related issues when the work day is over, we’ll never be able to switch off completely, which has a negative impact on mental health. This is what makes “ proper time management in the workplace and, whenever possible, delegating functions so important”, says Cinthya. “This way, you’ll have some personal space to exercise self-care. Also, understanding that being connected isn’t the same as being available 24/7 is crucial. Constantly checking your email, mobile phone or social media makes it difficult to disconnect”.
Try not to go home straight after work (go for a walk, go to the cinema, have a drink with friends), spend some time every day enjoying your hobbies, spend more time with your loved ones, take a break from electronic devices or get some exercise: these will help you to relax, disconnect and restore your mind-body balance.
Getting a good night’s sleep is essential when it comes to keeping stress under control. In fact, Vicente Mera, head of the SHA Wellness Clinic’s Sleep Medicine department, says that “it has been demonstrated that thinking about future obligations is one of the main reasons why many people stay awake. A recent study has shown that writing down your to-do list for the next day five minutes before going to bed makes it easier to fall asleep”.
Click here to find out more about how to disconnect from work.