Updated: May 2
Job stress is a pretty common phenomenon. It can consume energy, put you behind in work, and can affect your overall mental health. Letting it consume you is not a wise decision. Instead, try to address it, find the trigger, learn to deal, and overcome the stress on your own and by seeking help. Finding a new job or leaving a job, because it is stressful, is not possible for everyone. We should look for a more realistic approach to managing stress at the workplace.
Here are some effective ways that can help you with reducing stress.
1. Find your stress trigger.
For everyone depending on their personality, the response to stress and the coping mechanism is different. In the same way, the stress triggers are also different. To learn how to manage and cope with stress, especially at the workplace, you need to find your stress triggers. For at least a couple of weeks, observe the situation, events, people and try to record what is having a negative physical or emotional effect on you. Describe these situations and your response to them on a paper and ask yourself some questions like: Where were you? Who and What was involved? How did you react? What did you feel? Evaluating the situation and answering these questions will help you find the causes of your stress. Once you find the triggers of stress, now you can learn how to manage it.
2. Have a good start in the morning.
An excellent start to the day is a key factor in having a good day at work. Start your day with some sort of meditation, having a healthy breakfast. Robin Sharma's book the 5 AM Club highlights the benefits of making a routine of waking up early in the morning. Waking up a little early to do all the necessary things calmly can be an effective way to have a good day. If you are doing everything hurriedly, including feeding kids, gulping your coffee, dropping the kids at school, being stuck in traffic, then most probably you are not having a good start to your day. Planning your day, having a good nutritional breakfast can be of great help to start a stress-free morning.
3. Work on time-management skills.
Time management is most important to avoid stressful situations. From going early to bed and waking up early in the morning, and not leaving the task on tomorrow, time management is involved in everything. Sometimes you feel overwhelmed by the work and tasks at hand. You can improve time management by:
Setting realistic goals: set realistic goals for yourself at work. Setting a deadline and working daily to meet the deadline can be of great assistance to reduce stress.
Making a priority list: make a list of all the due tasks and prioritize them. The tasks that are more important and urgent work on them first. Say no to other tasks until you are done with the work at hand.
Furthermore, if some project is too large to handle at once, break it into smaller steps and work at one step at a time. This way, time management could have a great impact on you, and you will be able to avoid a great number of stressful situations at work and in your own personal life.
4. Stay organized and comfortable.
Planning ahead and staying organized can immensely reduce the chances of stress at the workplace. It can be beneficial and effective if you try to organize, even if you are not a very organized person. Organizing your time, schedule, your stuff to avoid the rush and clutter respectively can lead you to have a stress-free day at work. In this way, you can find yourself more productive at the workplace.
Along with organizing being physically comfortable at the workplace is also an important stress reliever. If you are physically uncomfortable where you sit or perform most tasks, you will feel stress piling up. If your chair is uncomfortable, you might end up having sore back or physical fatigue. This physical fatigue makes you more prone to having stress. Noise can also distract you from work and cause stress. Try to make the place as organized and comfortable as possible to reduce stress.
5. Stay away from conflict.
Interpersonal conflict at the workplace can be toxic. These conflicts can drain your emotional and physical health. Conflict with colleagues can lead you to a difficult situation. Avoiding them can eliminate unnecessary stress from life. The easy way to avoid conflict at the workplace is by avoiding gossip, staying away from saying things that might be offensive to other people, especially about religion, politics, or race. Other than that, trying to understand others' perspectives is important in any social setting.
6. Walk at lunch.
A sedentary lifestyle can take a toll on your physical and mental health. But modern life has become largely sedentary. To deal with the negative effects of it, try to go out for a walk whenever is possible. During the lunch break, you can have a routine of taking walks around the office, sidewalks, or nearby parks. This will not only change your scenery but will help you clear your mind, relax your body, improve your mood and physical shape, and boost your energy.
7. Seek help.
If these simple steps and tips are not helping you manage stress at the workplace, the feeling of being stuck in the matrix might engulf you with pessimism. Seeking some professional help could be of great help. It is suggested in several studies published in BMC psychiatry that counselling and seeking help are effective when you are unable to deal with stress and mental health issues on your own. These studies also explored the attitude toward mental illness and mental health was discouraging and unaccepting. In the past, accepting mental health issues and getting help was stigmatized, but in today's world, an effort is being put to destigmatize mental health. Through a counsellor and therapist, you can learn how to manage work and work-related stress. Knowing that you are not alone who feel stressed at your job is rather comforting. Surveys indicated that work-related stress is reported by a large number of employees in the US and Canada. The more realistic approach to managing stress is by seeking help and learning effective coping mechanisms. Once you learn the ways to effectively deal with job-related stress, you are likely to have a healthy professional and personal life.