Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Keeping work blues at bay
I.M. Soni

Working women suffer from blues. It is already two hours in office, but they have not done much.

They do try to focus their mind on what they must do, but the mind, like a fatigued horse, does not quicken the pace. They may take refuge in “I am very unwell”, and may even leave the office.

Once in office, you try your best to put your mind on the spot, but it goes astray. You try hard; gulp a cup of strong coffee. It does not work because it is work blues you are fighting, not bad mood!

Sometimes, the atmosphere in the office puts you off. The colleague sitting next to you makes a loaded remark about your make-up or dress. This puts you in the low, which affects your performance. This may even spill over to the next day.

You drag your feet to work. Work becomes drudgery.

As a result, the more you think, the more you sink in the blues. Give yourself an emotional and mental jerk. Think yourself out of the rut.

What steps can you take to cope with work blues?

Pushing yourself into a deadly routine will bring in deadly results. It impedes performance and affects health. Husband becomes a nag because he finds you a laggard in love. Children find you wanting in showering affection.

Human body works at its best for only some spells of time. Then, it begins to fatigue. So, take a short spell out of your stuffy room, walk some distance, inhale deeply and come back to work.

Go out of the drudgery. When you are stuck in a desk job, your body becomes slow and sluggish. This affects your blood stream, which means less blood to the heart.

The solution does not lie in consuming cups of black coffee. It is in: be active. Get up as many times from your seat as you can. In short, do not be glued to your seat.

In practical terms, go out to the cabin where photocopying is done, talk to colleagues and if necessary, to the cabin attendants.

Walk your way to office, if distance is small. You will feel peppy. Your performance will improve.

A reader in the university, who walks to the office, says when her colleagues troop to tea shops, she strays for a brisk walk and returns pepped up.

The body becomes tardy and heavy if you have a desk job. Your breathing becomes short and shallow. The solution lies in getting up and sitting down. Do not root to your seat. Sprout out.

Stretch your limbs after every 30 minutes. This will save you from depending too much on one side of the body. Any movement is better than no movement. Stretch legs, arms, and spine. Shift from sitting to standing position. Get up from your seat as often as you can.

After a hard and hectic before-lunch session, you feel hunger gnawing at your stomach. This is time to watch as you may fill yourself with burgers, hotdogs and colas. Too much filling will make you droopy. It is important to eat wisely to be sprighty.

Feed yourself on fruit juice, greens and seasonal fruits. Stick to roti, unfried dal, vegetables and green salads. Keep sweets and colas at arm’s length.

Before you resume work, take a few deep breaths. Or exchange a few pleasant words with colleagues.

When nerves are stretched to the breaking point, break the deadly routine. Give a call to a friend, talk of something which spills a smile on your lips.

Kavita, a high-profile secretary, says, “I ring up an old friend just to have a bit of fun on the line. It breaks tension.”

It is pleasing to get pleasure when you are working hard.

Work is important, but it may become drudgery. You have to look for outlets. Or you stagnate.

There are occasions when you can freak out. Go home to your own nest. Have a fling with yourself!

Breaking the bond, once in a while, enables you to be zestful next day. You also realise that you have been grinding the same mill day after day, and that a welcome break is possible.

Work blues are also related to Monday mornings. Monday is the most unromantic day of the working woman.

She has to tear herself from a leisurely week-end. The romance of the week-end fades as the Monday morning dawns. She has to shift gears, get into a worker’s outfit.

She has to change from a wife to a woman to an office-worker. It is not easy. You are playing a delicate and different role. You need skill, imagination and power of persistence. It is all in you. Make the best of it.