Employee Managing Self with time management tool online

How to Manage Time, Wellness, and Self: Part Three

With an increasing number of companies transitioning to a hybrid or fully remote work environment, self-management is an essential skill to have in both personal and professional life. 

Through learning to manage yourself,  you can increase your productivity, flexibility, and quality of work. Additionally, successful self-management can lead to stronger emotional intelligence and self-awareness. 

What Does Managing Yourself Mean?

Self-management is a set of strategies and practices designed to direct your behaviors and emotions into a productive course of action. 

For instance, managing yourself can involve regulating your:

  • Time
  • Motivation
  • Stress
  • Decisions
  • Personal Development 

Let’s review some effective self-management strategies to help you build each of these skills.

Practice Being Self Aware

Practicing self-awareness is an excellent starting point in learning how to self-manage. Observe and access your own characteristics, such as work habits, how long you can stay focused, your most frequent stressors, and emotional responses. Use these observations to recognize your strengths as well as habits that need improvement. 

Organize Your Space

Organize your space to improve functionality and streamline your daily tasks.

By sorting your space, you can help improve your time management as well as prevent a few stressors from appearing. For instance, maintaining updated organizational systems for the files on your computer can result in you taking less time to search for a specific document or resource – isn’t it always in that folder you swear you checked twice already? – and frees your time for a more productive project. 

Other solutions may be:

  • Maintaining an agenda on your electronic devices or a physical planner
  • Trying a time management app or tool
  • Investing time in sorting your desk and workspace (leave digging through your drawers for your charger right before a meeting in the past!)

Create Routines

Design consistent routines that can help you to manage your time and tasks. You can try strategies such as:

  • Blocking your time in by breaking your day into time slots
  • Timing your tasks and adjust your plan accordingly
  • Breaking your tasks into subtasks
  • Identifying priorities
  • Taking the time to write down your schedule

Set Clear Goals

When creating your goals, consider using the SMART goal method. Goals should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. 

You can use your current projects to work towards these goals, such as improving how well you navigate on a particular software or becoming comfortable with public speaking in front of your colleagues.

Make Your Own Deadlines

Before you get too excited– we’re not saying to spontaneously decide the presentation due at the end of the week is actually due next week. Instead, we suggest creating your own deadlines within stages of a project or throughout tasks. This can hold you accountable in your time management practices and drive you toward reaching your goals. 

Develop Healthy Responses to Stress

When you start to feel stressed, try to respond in a healthy way, even if it begins with just pausing and taking a breath. 

Find responses that work for you; some find exercising or taking a walk around the block to help relieve stress, some take a few minutes to meditate or do breathing exercises and some may carve out time in their schedule to participate in a hobby they enjoy. 

 Practice Self-Care

Set aside time to rest and practice self-care. Self-care can take the form of eating healthy foods, participating in activities that bring you joy as well as making a cognizant effort to disconnect from work. Through these efforts, you can recharge your energy and will often find yourself more productive when you reconnect to work. 

Focus on What You Can Control

We can plan everything; collaborate with an excellent team at work, set strong objectives, and manage our time well ahead of the project deadline – but things always come up and change the plan. 

In the event something pops up and hinders your current plans, consider pausing, taking a short break, and deciding how to best navigate the situation before proceeding. 

We may not be able to control our circumstances, but we can control our response. 

Evaluate and Adjust 

Consider checking in with yourself on a weekly basis. You can use this time to identify areas you can improve as well as come up with plausible solutions to work towards these improvements. 

For instance, instead of setting the objective of spending less time on your phone, try blocking out “phone time” and “no phone time” in your schedule. 

You’ll be more likely to keep this specific goal instead of trying to avoid going on your phone altogether. 

Additionally, keep in mind that you may have to adjust your practices and goals while you build your time management skills. Be patient with yourself and remember: 

“The biggest room in the world is the room for improvement.” – Helmut Schmidt.

Ready to learn more?

Read on to learn how to support your company culture through human connection.
Connect with Culture Works to learn how we can provide the processes to operationalize culture in your organization and why we do what we do.

Woman giving a high five to her colleague

Did you know that employees in high-trust organizations are consistently more productive, energetic, and collaborative than employees in organizations with a lack of trust? In fact, employees in high-trust companies report 74% less stress, 40% less burnout, and 50% higher productivity. Wowza!

However, building trust with employees isn’t always as easy as throwing monthly pizza parties or implementing casual Fridays. While these perks can temporarily boost morale, they aren’t likely to have lasting effects on employees’ happiness.

The good news is that business owners have many options to try and build a culture of trust in their organization. But before we get to that, let’s review what trust means in a workplace and how it can improve a business.

What Does Trust Mean in the Workplace?

In a workplace, trust means that employees:

  • Can connect to their colleagues
  • Contribute to the company, and
  • Are offered opportunities to learn, improve and grow

In a strong culture of trust, employees should trust their leadership and colleagues; and vice versa.

How Does Trust Improve the Workplace?

When leadership focuses on building trust with employees, there are several subsequent benefits–that’s why 96% of CEOs rate trust with employees a high priority.

These benefits can range from increased quality of work to employee retention. In fact, Harvard Business Review found that compared to employees in a low-trust company, employees in a high-trust organization report:

  • 106% more energy at work
  • 13% fewer sick days
  • 76% more engagement, and
  • 29% more satisfaction in their life

Sound good to you? Let’s review a few strategies that leaders can use to build trust with their employees. 

Recognize Successes and Wins

According to neuroscience research, recognition has the strongest effect on trust. Leaders can recognize excellence in a variety of ways. For starters, when providing recognition, positive feedback is the most impactful when it is:

  • Personal
  • Tangible
  • Specific, or
  • Comes from peers

For instance, employees may find a specific comment on their contribution to a particular project more meaningful than a vague “you’ve been doing great!”

Further, leaders publicly addressing successes not only celebrates the employees and their accomplishments but also can inspire other team members to pursue their own successes. In addition, the public discussion of a win gives the excelling employee a platform and opportunity to share their strategies, helping the team to learn and improve even more.

Provide Flexibility With How Employees Complete Their Work

Employees value flexibility and discretion with how they complete their work. In fact, a survey conducted by Citigroup and LinkedIn found that nearly half of employees would give up a 20% raise for greater control over how they work. 

By trusting their employees to manage their work, leaders display their confidence in their employees as well as provide a space for innovation.

Share Information Throughout the Organization

Did you know only 40% of employees report that they feel well informed about their company’s current goals and strategies? By widely sharing this information throughout the organization, leaders can help their employees to feel confident, stable, and part of the company’s future.

Prioritize Consistency

Business owners can reduce stress and improve productivity by creating a stable workplace for their employees. Leaders can create consistency through clear performance expectations and positive feedback practices. 

Encourage Coaching and Guidance

Research shows that leadership plays a crucial role in creating trust in a workplace through guidance and coaching. If business owners opt for a coaching approach over traditional management, employee performance and retention are more likely to improve on a long-term basis.

For example, a leader may choose to guide employees through mistakes and find solutions instead of disciplining them. This approach may lead to the employee feeling more comfortable asking questions and performing high-quality work in the future.

For more examples, read on in our article “What’s the Difference Between a Manager and a Leader?

Facilitate Purposeful Conversations

When management regularly engages in safe, open dialogue with employees, employee retention can improve. Why? Because challenges are addressed, discussed, and resolved early on.

Value Soft Skills

Nonverbal communication can help leaders further connect with their employees. For example, positive body language can create a welcoming environment—eye contact and nodding can imply interest and attentiveness. 

In combination with purposeful conversations and active listening, nonverbal communication can make leaders approachable and help to develop trust with employees.

Try Active Listening

Active listening builds trust among team members and encourages employees to voice their concerns, find answers to their questions, and communicate their ideas. Employees who feel heard are 4.6 times more likely to feel empowered to perform better at work.

Read on to learn more about unique ways to support your company culture through human connection.

Employee Managing Their Wellness in the Workplace

How to Manage Time, Wellness, and Self: Part Two

To manage personal wellness, individuals need to make conscious efforts with the goal of improving physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health. 

While often associated with yoga classes, seminars, and green juice smoothies, personal wellness should be more a long-term, evolving process than a short-term, achievable goal. Although we admit, we do enjoy yoga, seminars, and green juice smoothies – Who says you can’t have both?

Wellness isn’t only significant at home or in the workplace. You should consider and adjust both aspects of your life in your journey toward personal wellness. 

So, we’re here with the second part of our three-part series. Today, we’re discussing strategies to manage your personal well-being in the workplace. 

What is Wellness in the Workplace?

Wellness in the workplace refers to the mental and physical health of employees in the company. Therefore, your efforts to improve wellness may include elements intended to support healthy behaviors as well as reduce risks to both mental and physical health. By addressing these risks and practicing healthy behaviors, you can improve your work life as well as prevent more serious health issues in the future. 

How Do Companies Improve Employee Wellness?

Companies may take a number of approaches to improve employee wellness. For example: 

  • Wellness Activities
  • Free Medical Screenings
  • Health Coaching
  • Health Club Memberships
  • Stress Management Practices
  • On-Site Fitness Programs or Facilities
  • Accessible Kitchens or Healthy Food options
  • Company Wellness Competitions
  • Wellness Education: Programs, Courses, Online Resources

In addition to utilizing the wellness resources provided by your company, you can also implement several strategies to manage your own wellness in the workplace. Let’s dive in.

How to Manage Your Personal Wellness

For many people, wellness can be difficult to prioritize amongst packed schedules, demanding projects, and a busy personal life. However, investing in your personal well-being can help you build healthy habits to better navigate these obstacles. 

Prioritize a Proper Sleep Schedule

According to Fort HealthCare Business Health, reducing your sleep by as little as an hour and a half for just one night could result in daytime alertness being reduced by as much as 32%. Further, reduced sleep can also impair your brain’s ability to process and store information as well as problem-solve. 

The adult body requires approximately six or seven hours of sleep per night to function correctly. Prioritize sleep by first deciding what your schedule will be including a goal time to wake up and a goal time to go to sleep. Consider implementing strategies to help you keep this schedule, such as:

  • Setting alarms to remind yourself to get ready for bed
  • Designing a calming nighttime routine
  • Turning off devices at a certain time
  • Skipping naps (we know, we know! But naps can make it difficult to sleep at night and lead to drowsiness or grogginess, especially if the nap is after 3 pm.)
  • Create a quiet and dark environment to sleep

Take Steps to Manage Your Stress

Work-related stress can cause you to feel unhappy with both your job and your personal life. The good news is that there are a few strategies you can use to manage your stress and improve your personal wellness. 

Find Your Stressors

Try to pinpoint your stressors by asking yourself what exactly is making you feel stressed and why? You may choose to keep a journal to record your thoughts as well as information about stressful circumstances. This technique can help you to learn more about your specific stressors so you can better prepare for and respond to similar events in the future. 

Develop Healthy Responses to Stress

Common poor responses to workplace stress may include stress-eating and shutting down. These habits can be tough to break so we suggest slowly transitioning into healthier options– seems a little counterintuitive to stress yourself out about not responding to stress correctly, right?

Instead, replace these habits with healthier alternatives. Consider a quick walk around the block in the sunlight, a meditation break,  or even just a couple of minutes of breathing exercises to allow yourself to slow down, process, and figure out the best way to navigate the situation.

Set Aside Time to Recharge

Brains and bodies require rest to recharge and function efficiently. To recharge, you should be taking time to completely disconnect from work–no thinking about work while making dinner, no tinkering with a project while watching tv at night. When you come back to work after recharging, you’ll likely find yourself feeling focused and productive. 

Socialize and Communicate

Isolation and a lack of communication can negatively impact your mental health and well-being, both in your work and personal life. Socializing can sharpen cognitive skills, reduce stress as well as contribute to your sense of happiness and well-being. Set aside time to spend with your friends and family and try to keep these plans. 

As for socializing in the workplace, communication can foster relationships among colleagues and ensure you are getting the support you need. 

Learn more about supporting your company culture through human connection, here.

Be Patient With Yourself

At Culture Works, we want to remind you that personal wellness is a constant process and deliberate effort; don’t be hard on yourself if you struggle to pick up these habits right away! Be patient with yourself in your journey toward personal wellness.

“Strive for continuous improvement, instead of perfection.” — Kim Collins.

Stay Tuned for Part Three!

Stay tuned for part three of our series, where we’ll discuss how to manage self.

Do you have a positive company culture? Find out by reading our article “Five Signs You Have a Positive Company Culture.”

Top 10 Best and Worst Mergers of All Time!

If your company prioritizes purpose and culture, a merger can disrupt the flow. As Jack Canfield once said, “If you can tune into your purpose and really align with it, setting goals so that your vision is an expression of that purpose, then life flows much more easily.” On that note, let’s take a look back in time at some of the best and worst company mergers (so we can learn together!)