Children are always encouraged to have fun, play games, and be creative. In adulthood, it becomes more difficult to relax and plan leisure activities due and personal responsibilities. Burnout develops when the impact of workload and organizational stressors becomes overwhelming. Burnout affects mood, motivation, energy, and self-care. Finding ways to recharge through self-care, play, and recreation maintains well-being and reduces stress. Self-care involves prioritizing mental and physical health needs by adopting routine, healthy lifestyle habits and participating in leisure activities. Play is a type of self-care combining mental and physical activities, done individually or as a group, at work or home, for enjoyment, relaxation, and satisfaction.
Work Self-Care Examples:
Avoid eating lunch at your desk or computer. Eat outside or in the breakroom.
Go for a short walk during lunch or work breaks. Explore your installation’s green spaces.
Stand, stretch, and move your body throughout the workday.
Home Self-Care Examples:
Exercise regularly. Visit the gym or recreation center.
Maintain healthy sleep and eating habits.
Spend time with loved ones and pets.
Engage in hobbies (reading, hiking, cooking).
Workplace Play Examples:
Create an office scavenger hunt.
Celebrate birthdays, hail & farewells, and accomplishments.
Take a break to enjoy a game on your phone.
Leave puzzles, board games, or coloring pages in the conference room or breakroom.
Benefits of Workplace Play for Burnout Prevention:
Improves functioning when experiencing stress.
Increases the mental & physical energy necessary to prevent burnout.
Encourages teamwork & cooperation.
Inspires creativity and innovation.
Helps to view and approach work challenges in new ways.
Mental and Physical Health Benefits of Play:
Reduces depression and lowers risk of developing dementia.
Relieves stress, reduces cortisol, and lowers heart disease risk.
Improves brain function.
Stimulates the mind and boosts creativity, learning, and memory.
Improves relationships and connections with others.
Keeps you feeling young and energetic.