Career Management

We spend so much time in the workplace that our happiness and well-being can be hugely affected.

Take a look at these 4 tips for staying happy at work and check to see if there might be some improvements you can make to your daily routine.

Do you have any others? Let us know in the comments below!

1) Keep personal issues to yourself:

We’ve all been there – something big is happening in your personal life and it’s threatening to overwhelm just about everything else that’s going on, including work. If you’re facing an emergency then take steps to try and resolve it, particularly if it involves children, close friends or family.

However, if whatever is going on doesn’t fall into the ‘emergency’ category then try to leave it at the door when you arrive in the mornings and pick it up when you leave. This will actually have a doubly positive effect – firstly, it will ensure that your personal issues do not end up preventing you from being productive in the workplace and, secondly, it will give you a break from thinking about them so that when you are finished at the end of the day you might have actually been able to gain some perspective.

In the same way as you need to avoid taking work stress home with you, leave your personal issues for non-work time.

2) Stay healthy and hydrated:

It’s amazing the difference that what we put in to our bodies can make to the way that we function in the workplace. It can influence everything from concentration levels to stamina and attitude. Refined sugar & heavy carbohydrates can leave you feeling exhausted and strung out with barely enough attention span to write an email.

Although it can be difficult to create the diet you want when you’re not at home, try to incorporate wholefoods, plenty of vegetables, lean meat and fish, as well as fruit and lots and lots of water.

Watch your caffeine intake too – if you’re a real caffeine fiend then try swapping one or two caffeinated drinks for a herbal tea instead. It will help you avoid the plummeting lows after large amounts of caffeine, as well as contributing to keeping you hydrated.

3) Make sure you have some personal space:

Most of us are at work for at least eight hours a day and, especially if you’re working in an open plan office, by the end of the day you can feel exposed and irritated.

This is completely natural – you spend more time in this space than you do awake at home so not being able to get any privacy at all in that time is understandably a bit draining. No matter what your office set up, try to arrange it so that you feel like you have a degree of personal space – within the confines of company policy.

Make sure that you have a comfortable desk and chair set up and if you have any physical issues then try to ease these with ergonomic furniture or supports. Decorate the space you have so that you feel at home – you might not be able to start bringing in lights or furniture but photos, quotes, books, your own mug or a plant that reminds you of home should be acceptable in most circumstances.

4) Give yourself a reward:

If you’re doing well at work, or you’re just managing to stay cheerful, then why not reward yourself with something you like?

The reward should be something unconnected to your work and something you will really enjoy. An after work drink with friends, taking a new yoga class, getting a pedicure, buying a new pair of shoes, treating yourself to lunch at a new restaurant or taking time out to spend time with friends and family will all make you feel like you’re getting good balance in your life, rather than just being trapped in a cycle of work.

The knock on effect of this will be an overall more positive mood – in the same way that stressful events can make you feel blue or depressed, positive experiences can brighten your work mood too.


These are four easy ways to stay happy at work. Other great tips include taking time away from your desk on a regular basis, getting organised so that you feel in control of your workload, moving around the office to get your heart pumping regularly and trying harder to focus on the positives, rather than the negatives.

Try one, or more, of the above and see what kind of impact it makes on your happiness levels.

Author: James Gouge is the CEO at a leading recruitment serving candidates & businesses across North London & the surrounding areas.

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