You’ve made it through the first week of prioritizing well-being! (And if you haven’t, don’t fret — you can start here.) What activities made a positive impact on your day? Were there any that were difficult to accomplish? Consider intentionally making those into habits as we head into the second week of this challenge.

Having trouble sticking with it? Make sure you’re subscribed to the calendar, and enlist your friends to join you in strengthening well-being.

1. 👥 Get coaching: Coach an early-career journalist

  • Why? Our news experience is not in vain, but it can feel that way when our work is devalued both from an organizational standpoint and a community understanding. Bottling your experience into a coaching session can boost your confidence and realign your work’s mission with your values, the latter being a direct contributor to your resilience.   

2. 🤫 Get silence: Turn off Slack/Teams notifications on your phone

  • Why? Self-distraction is one of the biggest culprits of an “always on” digital culture, and it can take up to 23 minutes to refocus after being distracted from a present task. 

3. 📵 Get protective: Set your OOO for deep work

  • Why? The myth of multitasking has done a number on our mental health. By assigning specific kinds of work to protected and exclusive parts of your day, you can manage your expectations and the “response time” expectations of those around you, thereby decreasing stress and work-related anxiety. 

4. 😌 Get self-compassionate: De-escalate a task/project from urgent to important

  • Why? It’s all too common to find yourself in a season of “everything is urgent,” which can snowball into unrealistic expectations and fear of failure. Showing yourself compassion as you deprioritize something can increase your optimism, curiosity and even your intellectual flexibility. 

5. 😂 Get laughing: Laugh with your colleagues, team or friends 

  • Why? The cliche has been proven time and time again: Laughter is the best medicine. Besides increased mental flexibility and feelings of belonging, laughter increases our “feel-good” hormones (endorphins), which reduce stress and increase your body’s ability to relax.


The book “Atomic Habits” by James Clear uses a framework called the Four Laws of Behavior Change, which breaks down the process of building a habit into four steps: cue, craving, response and reward. 

Last week, we learned how to build habit cues into your day. Now, we want to establish a craving for that habit. Make it attractive by pairing an action you want to do with an action you need to do. You can also create a motivation ritual by doing something you enjoy right before a difficult habit. 

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You also might be interested in:

  • This is a column on how to measure well-being for yourself and your organization. By the end, you’ll have a clear direction and quantitative ways to chart a healthy path forward for your journalists.

  • Experts define moral injury as the suffering that comes from witnessing, perpetrating or failing to prevent events that violate one’s own deeply held moral beliefs and values. It is not classified as a mental illness, but it can lead to depression, substance abuse or burnout, which is one reason news managers need to understand the phenomenon of moral injury — and ways to address it or head it off.

  • For many newsrooms, changing the systems that protect unhealthy culture could be a few sustained decisions away from reality.