How to find peace in a busy workday

Light Grey Bamboo V-Neck Tee Shirt in a brick alley

By: Heather Bien

Whether you’re starting out in your career or have made your way to the corner office, chances are you have days where stress levels are high, to-do lists are long, and you’re longing for just a few minutes of peace and quiet. Luckily, there are tricks you can weave into your workday that allow you to find calm, intention, and focus amidst the meetings, phone calls, and emails.

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Here are 7 of our favorite ways to find peace in a busy workday.

  1. Carve Out a Moment of Morning Calm: You can rush through popping in a coffee pod as soon as you get into the office or you can take a few minutes to intentionally go through the motions of brewing a delicious cup of coffee. Inhale the aroma and make it an indulgent moment of calm, not just a quick caffeine fix. 
  2. Declutter Your Desk: Before you leave work each evening and a few times throughout the day, take a minute or two to tidy up any outstanding files, organize those random desktop items, put away your pens, and create a space that feels like a blank slate.
  3. Make a Workday Playlist: Sometimes you need to put on those get-pumped up tunes, and, other times, you need a workday playlist that’s all about soothing, instrumental sounds that put you in a productive zone. Maybe that’s jazz, maybe it’s dreamy electronic jams, or perhaps it’s classical. Listen to what keeps you feeling stress-free, but ready to grind.
  4. Focus on Just One Task at a Time: The real secret to finding peace in a busy workday? Close your email and focus on one task at a time. Even if you consider yourself a champion multitasker, you’ll find that you’re more focused and less frantic when you complete one item, without distractions, before moving on to the next.
  5. Build in Rituals Around Must-Do’s: When we create a ritual or routine around an otherwise less desirable must-do item, it gives us a sense of calm and control. So, next time you have a high-stress meeting on the agenda, take five minutes beforehand to make a cup of chamomile tea to sip throughout the hour. Or, after a tough phone call, do a breathing exercise to reset.
  6. Set a Tone of Respect in Your Office: Someone has to set the tone in your office––let it be you! Be the one that creates a culture of respect for others’ need for time, space, and self-care.
  7. Take a Walk: When all else fails, take a walk. Whether you work in the city or are simply walking around the parking lot, get up from your desk and move your legs. Even if you’re eating a desk lunch, take a few minutes to get some sunshine and reconnect with the larger world around you. And, if you’re into meditation, this is the perfect opportunity to open up a meditation app and find a few minutes of mindfulness on the go.

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