“Don’t your hands hurt?” I get asked this pretty often. But they don’t. Not really. If they start to hurt, I change how I’m doing things.
You want to know when my hands (and my neck, and my back) really hurt? When I had a desk job. 8-hour days working at a computer, hunching, doing mostly data entry. Being so “busy” I worked through breaks and ignored my pain. Until it got really bad. Learn from my mistakes. Pain is your body’s way of saying “pay attention.”
Change it up
As much as you can, change up the way you do things. Stand up while you’re talking on the phone. Get a headset for your phone, so your neck isn’t in a weird position all the time. Raise your computer monitor (or set it on top of some phone books) so you don’t have to hunch over to see it. Starting to use my mouse left-handed made a huge difference for me. Sure it was difficult at first, but it gets easier if you keep it up.
Move your body
Get up and take a walk around the office. Do some neck stretches while you’re talking on the phone.
I remember feeling really silly, but I started doing yoga at my desk. At first, I would wait until the person across the hall from me got up to make copies. But then I didn’t really care. I would rather feel silly than be in pain! Or, get your coworkers involved. Take your “coffee” break together and do yoga instead.
Here are some of my favorite yoga videos to get you started. They come from YogaDownload.com*. The site offers several free 20 minute classes, classes you can download for a few bucks, or monthly and yearly subscriptions. I love the variety and the convenience of being able to “take yoga anywhere.”
Case of the Mondays: This free class is a series of standing and seated yoga poses. What I really love about this one is that they demonstrate doing yoga in office attire.
Neck and Shoulder Relief: This class is free as well. You can do the entire sequence while sitting at your desk.
Therapeutic Yoga for Wrists, Shoulders and Neck: This is my current favorite class. It’s very thorough and all done while sitting.
Remember to put yourself first
What you do is hard work. It may seem easy, but sitting at a desk all day is difficult. On top of that, your job is probably stressful. Take care of yourself first.
Take frequent breaks, move your body, and get regular massage.
Your body will thank you!
*The links to yogadownload classes are affiliate links. Be assured, I only recommend products and services I actually use and value.