Working in hospitality can have its pros and cons. Being an employee for a bar, a restaurant, a nightclub or a hotel can be a really flexible job, with the ability to book holiday at short notice, switch between part time and full time more easily and be offered the chance to grow through the company and train to be in a higher position.
However, working in hospitality can also entail negative interactions with customers, late nights and a derogative impact on your social life. Nevertheless, like all problems, these factors can be solved and overcome. So, whether you’re switching jobs or being employed in the hospitality sector for the first time, here’s how to get your body ready for working unsocial hours:
Remember to Relax
If you’re used to working the normal 9am to 5pm job, shift work may take a real hit on your body. Working late and out of your normal routine, can affect your sleep, your mood and your eating habits.
Firstly, make sure you look after your body especially in the first few weeks of employment, as it will be adapting to an entirely different routine. Don’t try and push yourself and do what you would normally do (e.g. an early morning gym session or meeting family for lunch). Try to relax as much as possible and let everything else fall into place around you. Soon you’ll be able to evolve and do things you usually do, just at different times than before.
Eat and Stay Hydrated
When you’re working late, especially at fast food restaurants, sugary and high-fat foods may be your only options. However, start to prepare yourself late night dinners and healthy snacks, so you aren’t eating food that will begin to affect your health.
On the contrary, make sure you do eat regularly and don’t miss out on any meals just because you’re working late and don’t feel hungry. It’s also vital to stay hydrated and drink a lot of water while you’re working, and even when you’re not. Avoid energy drinks and highly caffeinated beverages, as they may give you a temporary buzz, but it’ll quickly wear off and make you feel even more deflated.
Take Advantage of the Lay-Ins
Although your friends and family may feel like they are on a different time zone to you, it’s important to rest and restore. Make sure you’re sleeping a full eight hours each night and don’t schedule things for early in the morning. Let loved ones know your days off and plan things for then instead.
Don’t Let Work Take Over Your Life
It’s so easy to get carried away with your work that you forget about the other important parts of your life. Don’t let working consume you or the hours in your day. Make sure you take holiday when you need to and rest if you do not feel well. Don’t push yourself too much and remember to still make the effort to go and see your family and friends when you can.