Being stressed at work is as common as anything. Moreover, anyone who has ever had to do something for a living felt pressure of some kind. And this is regardless of whether you’re doing something you like or despise. It’s simply universal.
In most cases, stress comes from worrying whether you will meet a certain deadline or some challenging obligation. However, these are not as short-term as they might appear. They can turn into something chronic, which leads to both mental and physical problems.
Actually, long-term stress is pretty common nowadays. What’s more, work issues are the most common reason for stress, according to U.S. studies. But it doesn’t have to be like that. You can successfully manage workplace stress, and here’s how.
Why Does Stress Happen in the Workplace?
Before we can talk about stress management at the workplace, we need to establish why it happens in the first place. Namely, some factors simply go hand-in-hand with it. These stress inducers include the following:
- Over the top performance expectations;
- Conflicting demands;
- Low salaries;
- Lack or non-existent social support;
- Too much work;
- Unchallenging or unengaging work;
- Few or no opportunities to advance in the job hierarchy.
The unfortunate reality is that there is no stress reduction once the clock signals the end of the shift. People head home with the same feelings they’ve had during their eight or so hours of work. As such, its effects can completely wreck a person’s well-being.
Have Good Thoughts Before the Day Starts
A guide for stress management can’t begin without mentioning the importance of having good thoughts. After all, being positive about the rest of your day is crucial to having that good day in the end. But how can you set yourself into that mode?
The first thought anyone should have when they open their eyes is to be thankful that they’re alive. It sounds cheesy, but it works. The trick is in small things such as having a roof over your head, food on the table, and so on. But that’s not all.
Other examples of positivity include not comparing yourself to others. This is especially true pre-work. Why? Well, stress comes from thinking that your coworkers have it easier. But that’s not always the case. In fact, they probably think the same about you.
Plan and Organize Your Duties
Next up, to minimize how stress affects your professional life, it’s up to you to manage and organize your duties better. Many of us make the same two mistakes. That is, we underestimate tasks, and we don’t go about them in any particular order.
By not being organized, we lose precious time thinking about what to do next. This is textbook avoidable stress. But how do we reset things? Moreover, is it possible to start from scratch and become an organized person? Yes! Here’s how.
Firstly, the easiest way to make a plan is to write it down. It might seem too simple, but it works great. Once you do that for several tasks, rank them by importance. You can also arrange your calendar while at it. And lastly, be flexible. If something doesn’t work, revisit how you’ve organized things and shuffle them again.
Mind Your Own Business
Sometimes, we can’t choose our company. That can be quite a problem. Some people are simply prone to being dramatic, and as such, they transfer their anxiety onto others. You should, therefore, try to avoid them at any cost. Of course, be polite and say hello, but don’t hang around them if you don’t need to.
Minding your own business is a great way to reduce stress. Keeping your focus solely on your work isn’t cowardly. It’s the adult thing to do. It will save you both your physical and mental health in the long run, and that’s all you should care about. But what if you can’t avoid people that make any situation stressful? Well, we’re not done here.
Create a Healthy Response to People Around You
As we’ve said, some people can simply provoke your flight or fight response. But there are ways to avoid them. Aside from following the old ten-second rule, have a healthy response that will benefit you in other ways.
Firstly, we’d recommend working out. Exercising in any way is a great way to reduce and manage overall stress. Be it punching a bag while boxing or running your heart out, it’s both better than to sit on the couch and wonder why it’s all happening to you.
Another stress relief option to have is indulging in hobbies. Whether it’s sports, making craft beer with friends, or collecting certain items, it doesn’t matter. The only important thing is to have fun and feel good instead of taking deep breaths and thinking about work-related issues.
Start and End Work on Time
When working, we all have the stress of whether we’re going to wake up on time and show up when we need to at our workplace. And yes, that’s important. You should be diligent about your professional life. However, it should work both ways.
Namely, one needs to switch off when the clock signals the end of your shift. By doing this, people can understand the balance between professional and personal life. It’s not a sin to disconnect from work, especially when it’s time to go home.
This is also key when it’s time to take a vacation. Some people under stress are so afraid of what will happen at work that they skip taking time off. However, vacation days are a perfect opportunity to relax and get back on track.