As part of our ongoing development at Telstra, our people regularly complete training to help them understand the business or more efficiently go about their day. Recently, many of us completed workplace training on fatigue management, gaining a better understanding of what it is, where it comes from, and how to combat it.
Specifically, some of the main culprits include insufficient sleep, caffeine at the wrong time of the day and too much sugar, along with poor nutrition and hydration. My team and I came together, to share some of our favourite fatigue management tips, and how we’ve applied these to our working days to be our best selves.
You are what you eat
Nutrition and hydration are an important part of the mix to ensure you’re functioning well and avoiding fatigue. It’s easy to look to sugar or caffeine to give you a temporary energy hit but the benefits are short-lived. Advice that stood out to me was specifically about eating right and staying hydrated.
Try to skip carbs and eat low fat/high protein foods, like fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meats, tuna and poached eggs. These are also low-GI (Glycaemic Index) foods that provide an even blood sugar level over time – so you’ll avoid the energy peaks and troughs while staying alert. And, if you’re still feeling fatigued, you might find that a glass of water could do the trick!
– John, Recruitment Marketing Specialist
An apple a day
Being a self-confessed sugar fiend, I always suspected that my 3pm pick-me-ups were masking a bigger issue. The constant reliance on ‘treats’ to get me through the afternoon is a common trend but, it’s my body’s way of telling me something is missing and sugar is just the coping mechanism.
The solution: limit my sugar intake! By making sure I’ve had about two litres of water a day and including fresh fruit and vegetables in every meal, my body can successfully fight fatigue without reaching for that sneaky chocolate bar.
– Jas, Senior Brand Specialist
Say no to that third cup of Joe
Look, coffee is delicious. Plus, it helps me get my head in the game before I start a big task, but how much is too much? I learned the jury may be out on how many cups specifically, but what we need to remember is when coffee mightn’t be the best idea.
It’s a diuretic, meaning it could force a toilet stop, break your concentration from the task at hand and might also cause you to fidget. Rather than sipping on a coffee every couple of hours, swap it out for water. To keep your water interesting, chop up fruits like lemons or cucumber to add some much-needed electrolytes while keeping you hydrated. For minimal impact, keep your coffee to the first half of your day so as not to negatively impact your sleeping pattern. It’s working for me!
– Ross, Content and Social Advisor
Sleep on it
As a mum of a one year old who works full time, I’m guilty of not making adequate time to wind down before bed. This impacts my ability to get a good quality sleep and so I’ve learnt to limit technology in the bedroom. I should stop using devices (phone, tablet, laptop – I’m guilty of all three!) one hour before going to bed. Devices keep the mind active and blue light (emitted from these devices) can inhibit the production of melatonin, which is critical for falling asleep.
I also got some other practical tips like taking short breaks, moving about, starting a conversation, changing posture frequently and stretching. I should also use the stand-up desks we have available in the office! By rotating tasks I can maintain mental interest levels to avoid tiredness
– Brie, Head of Employment Brands and Marketing
Between eating well, staying hydrated, limiting coffee, and sleeping deeply the team have pulled together these useful tips to help improve your work day. In the past, we’ve written about how providing growth opportunities is one of the aspects that makes the best companies attractive to employees. These are just some of the things we learned and hope you find them helpful!
Tops tips on how to beat fatigue:
1. Eat a balanced diet
2. Avoid coffee in the afternoon
3. Limit technology before bedtime