Need a Work Week Refresh? Try These 5 Tips

It's Monday.  We've all got a case of the them sometimes.  The work week can seem daunting when you have 5 (or more) days ahead of you.  I won't lie, when Monday rolls around I'm often thinking "Not this again," as I roll out of bed.  But don't worry!  There are ways to combat those Monday blues and make your week brighter and more tolerable.  Try these 5 tips to make it through until Friday happy hour... and every week after that.



1 | Hydrate

Water does wonders for you.  Staying hydrated is so important, too!  Just last week I bought a new water bottle (pictured below) in an effort to help me drink more water.  I think I might have a water bottle addiction, but I really like this one.  First off, it's 32 ounces, which is the largest water bottle I've seen that also has a basket for fruit and veggie infusions.  I love infusing my water with fresh veggies or fruits - it helps spice things up a bit (and in turn drink more since it's tastier) and, I'll be honest, I think it looks cool to have bright colored fruit added to a nice water bottle.  Some of my favorite infusions: cucumber, strawberry + orange, lemon + blueberry, pineapple. 

Refreshing Cucumber Water:

Infusion H2O water bottle with cucumber water

Buy it on Amazon:

$24.97 $35.67

2 | Add Some Green

This tip is two-fold.  My first tip is to add some leafy greens to your work week lunches.  Spinach, kale, arugula, collard greens... they all have great health benefits.  You don't have to have a salad either, although this Cranberry Avocado Spinach Salad with Chicken and Orange Poppyseed Dressing (from Cooking Classy) sounds amazing!  Try adding them to a smoothie or using lettuce or kale leaves as a soft taco shell. 

My second tip in this category is to spruce up your office or desk with a potted plant or bouquet of flowers.  Having a living plant in your office can brighten up the place and add some life (literally) to an otherwise boring cubicle. 

3 | Go Outside

Seriously.  Go take a walk on a nice sunny day.  Get out from behind your desk, take your eyes away from the computer screen, and go enjoy the outdoors on your lunch break.  Getting some fresh air and movement in the middle of the workday can do wonders for productivity and focus.  In fact, one study addressed exactly that, and was written about in The New York Times.

On the afternoons after a lunchtime stroll, walkers said they felt considerably more enthusiastic, less tense, and generally more relaxed and able to cope than on afternoons when they hadn’t walked and even compared with their own moods from a morning before a walk.
— Gretchen Reynolds, The New York Times

4 | Exercise

I know you know that exercise has many health benefits, but it also helps to calm your mind on stressful days.  Whether it's getting into the gym, exercising at home, going for that morning run, or even getting yourself to a yoga class, whatever your exercise of choice is, do it.  Recommit to moving your body and strengthening it at least a few times a week.  You might be surprised how much better you're able to focus, and hopefully you will feel recharged.  If you need some ideas for exercises you can do right in your office, follow my Fitness Friday series here on the blog!

5 | Hit the Hay

As in, get a good night's sleep!  Without proper sleep, what do you have?  Your head feels fuzzy, your concentration is non-existent, and you just feel run down and lousy.  Recently, the National Sleep Foundation put out their recommendations for sleep duration based on age (pictured below).  For most of us out there, that would be about 7-9 hours of sleep per night.  Make a commitment to yourself to turn off the TV, the laptop, and the lights and start winding down.  You'll be surprised at how much better you feel after even just one good night's sleep.  If you feel that great after one night, imagine how you'll feel after a whole week! 

Photo credit:

I hope these tips help you start your work week off on the right foot today.  I know I'll be aiming for all of these this week!

Readers: chat with me!  What are you trying this week to feel refreshed and focused?  Do you have any tips you swear by that you don't see here?  I'd love to know!  Leave a comment and share with the community.