Stress in the Workplace
Stress is an unfortunate fact of life. Surveys show that one of the biggest causes of stress in today’s society is the work place.
Companies expect more and more from their employees each year because of competition from rival companies. This, and the fact that most employees can be very easily replaced, means that people feel the need to over-perform in order to have job stability.
Common Causes of Stress in the Workplace
There are several factors that can cause stress in the workplace but if these can be eliminated then stress levels should fall dramatically. For example:
1. Prioritize your workload so that you don’t feel overworked and undervalued. Make a list of things you have to complete each day so that you can cross things off as you finish them.
2. Learn to delegate small tasks to assistants or other employees so that you don’t feel like you have to be in multiple places at once. Too many demands on your time can be very stressful so you should also learn to say NO.
3. Learn to manage your time so that you don’t end up with half a day’s work to do in the last hour of the day. Tell people that you don’t want to be interrupted for a specific part of the day so that you can fully concentrate on your workload for a set amount of time.
4. Break large projects or assignments down into manageable pieces. This allows you to see your progress as you go along rather than just at the end.
5. One of the biggest causes of stress in the workplace is noise. Some noise cannot be avoided, especially if you work in a factory or warehouse environment. If you can eliminate unnecessary noise by closing windows and doors then do so. A good pair of ear plugs can also help to shut out distracting noises.
Dealing with Work Related Stress
In most workplaces, work related stress cannot be eliminated totally however you can change how you react to the stressful factors.
For example try to recognize when you are becoming stressed by understanding the early warning signs i.e. irritability, frustration and lack of concentration for the job in hand.
Take regular breaks if you are allowed. If you have scheduled breaks use the time to do something totally separate from your work so go for a walk or read a magazine/book. Try to distance yourself from your work as much as you can.
Prioritize what needs doing by the end of the day. Try to make sure that stressful tasks aren’t done one after the other; break them up if you can with something a bit more light-hearted and fun. Make your work area a happy place to be rather than somewhere you’d rather not be, even if you only add a plant or a picture of your pet cat it will help.
Check you aren’t clenching your jaw or tensing your neck. If you are consciously relax them while breathing deeply. The unconscious tensing of muscles adds to your stress level which in turn makes you tense up even more.
Take a walk to the bathroom or around the office/factory so that you stretch other muscles that you may be tensing without realising it. If you can’t go for a walk stretch your limbs where you are; give them a shake and get the blood circulating again.
Breathe deeply and imagine yourself in your favorite place for a few seconds. Close your eyes and think about how the place looks, what sounds and smells you can hear and who is there with you but don’t get so carried away that you fall asleep or get told off for daydreaming!
Try applying pressure to acupuncture points such as the bridge of the nose or the temples. Rub the skin lightly and imagine the tension in your head and neck floating away.
Cover your eyes with the heels of your hands and forget about work for a few minutes; let your mind drift to wherever it wants to. Massage any muscles that are aching or feel tense.
Make a stress-relieving cup of chamomile tea. Sip it slowly to get the full benefits of the natural herbs. Try to cut down on coffee and other stimulants like chocolate as these can add to the symptoms of stress.
Regardless of what job you do it is inevitable that you will find yourself in stressful situations. The point is to devise strategies that allow you to cope with stress while at work rather than bringing it home with you at the end of the day.
Work related stress does not have to become overwhelming in your life. Managing stress is an important skill that all employees should learn. Set aside time to deal with these problems and devise strategies to deal with your stressful situations.
Performance coaching for busy executives is a great way to improve your productivity and performance while reducing and managing stress.
If you want to learn how to become a life coach, just follow the link to a great resource website.
Warning: Stress symptoms can be associated with serious medical conditions. The stress management information and techniques in this section are provided as general guidelines for informational purposes only. You should seek the help of qualified medical professionals if you have health or mental concerns over stress. You should also consult with your health care provider before making major changes in your diet or exercise levels.
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