8 No-Fail Ways to Kick the Sniffles This Winter

It's impossible to completely avoid all icky germs during cold season, but you can take steps to ensure you don't succumb to the bug. Once someone sneezes at the office, it's only a matter of hours before those germs are all over you. Adding the following suggestions to your daily routine helps keep the sniffles away, which is so much better than suffering through the general misery of the flu.

  1. Bring your own pen: You might not think about it, but borrowing a co-worker's pen spreads the germs to your hands from every other person who's used it. Bring your own pen or pencil to all meetings and stash a supply in a drawer, not on your desk, so that you know you're the only person who's used them.
  2. Get a massage: When you feel the sniffles settling in, head to the spa. Getting a massage increases circulation, which helps move colds through your system. It also leaves you stress-free, which keeps you happy and healthy.
  3. Add color: Bright and darker colored fruits and vegetables are high in antioxidants and vitamin C, which are what your body needs during this time of year to fight viruses and infections. If you aren't a fan of kale, blueberries, or red peppers, add a healthy smoothie or delicious juice to your day, pumping your body full of good stuff.
  4. Stay home: If you're feeling a little tickle at the back of your throat, take a sick day or work from home. It's best to avoid adding more germs to the ones you're already fighting, and it's also the right thing to do. Same goes if it seems everyone at the office is sneezing. Opt out of catching the work flu and teleconference for the day.
  5. Get outdoors: A little bit of pure sunshine does so much and also gets you out of the air-conditioned or heated atmosphere of the office. Along with boosting your mood, taking a lunchtime walk outdoors also gives you a healthy shot of vitamin D. So instead of hunkering down at your desk with a boring sandwich, take a walk and pick something up while you're out.
  6. Take the stairs: It's so easy to jump in the elevator, but confining yourself in small spaces makes it tough to avoid sneezes from your co-workers. Opt for the stairs, which gives your body a quick cardio boost. Just avoid touching the handrails.
  7. Clean your phone: Your phone is a big part of your day, getting you to meetings on time plus making important calls. It touches your face, hands, and desk and is often slid in your back pocket. Just think about all that germy potential! Give it a good cleaning daily.
  8. Sleep: Getting a good night's sleep plays along with your stress levels, so make sure to hit the sheets early if you're feeling a cold coming on. While you're slumbering, the body refreshes and restores, stimulating a helpful immune response. Make your bed cozier by washing pillows regularly, which gets rid of any lingering germs.

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