Today’s world is hectic and like every other thing, the workplace also seems like a roller coaster ride. Increasing demands, long hours, growing competition, tight deadlines leave one drained, worried, and overwhelmed. This ultimately leads to the very harmful disease, STRESS.
When this terrible disorder exceeds the ability to cope, things turn troublesome for mind, body, and at last, job satisfaction. If you think stress at the workplace has started interfering with your personal life, health, and work performance, you must take the needed action.
Despite being involved with a stressful job or unfortunate conditions, there are plenty of things that can reduce your stress levels and reward you with a sense of control at work. But first, let’s outline the main causes behind this monster.
Main Causes Behind Workplace Stress
Increased workload with an unrealistic deadline, leading to the feeling of being under pressure
Lack of work assignment, making one feel they are not suitable or lack skills
Poor working relationships or lack of interpersonal support, resulting in a sense of isolation
Not getting promotions and rewards
Lack of career opportunities, concern about job security or level of pay
Bullying or harassment
Ineffective management, which makes employees feel they don’t have a sense of direction
Over-management, which makes employees feel undervalued and hurt self-esteem
Beating Workplace Stress
1. Exercise regularly
Aerobic exercise raises heart rate, makes one sweat and serves as an effective way to increase energy, lift mood, increase focus and relax mind & body. Get at least 30 minutes of activity almost every day.
When stress mounts at work, take a break and move away from the stressful environment. If possible, take a stroll outside.
2. Make stress-busting food
Believe it or not but food choices have a huge impact on how one feels during working hours. Small, frequent, and healthy meals help to maintain an even level of blood sugar, keep away from mood swings and promote focus.
Avoid sugar and refined carbs. These feel-good foods crash mood and energy; thereby, increasing stress to many folds.
Reduce caffeine, trans fats, alcohol and foods with high levels of chemical preservatives.
Boost mood with consumption of omega-3 fatty acids such as fatty fish, flaxseed, seaweed and walnuts.
Avoid nicotine and limit alcohol.
3. Never skimp on sleep
Skimping on sleep interferes with creativity, productivity, concentration and problem-solving skills.
Go to bed and get up at the same time every day (including weekends). Make sure you sleep for 8 hours a night.
Turn off screens an hour before sleeping, as light emitted smartphones, computers, TV and tablets suppresses production of melatonin and disrupts sleep.
Focus on quiet and relaxing activities like reading or listening soft music, keeping lights low.
4. Break stressful habits
Resist perfectionism: Setting unrealistic goals means setting yourself up to fall short. Focus on doing your best and that’s the best.
Flip negative thinking: Think positive about your work, praise yourself about small accomplishments and avoid thinking about negative people.
Don’t waste time on controlling things you can’t: Rather than stressing over behavior of people, focus on things you can control like choosing the way you react to problems.
Prioritize tasks: Take high-priority tasks first. If you have to do something you don’t really like, do it first and make rest of the day pleasant.
Break projects into small steps: If there’s a large and complicated project, rather than taking everything at once, focus on one manageable step at a time.
Learn to compromise: Bending a little at work helps find a happy middle ground needed to lower the stress levels.
Some Other Important Suggestions
Turn to co-workers for support
Form new and healthy relationships with colleagues
Spend time with family & friends
Talk to your employer regarding workplace stressors
Ask for new responsibilities
Hopefully, these useful ways will help you conquer workplace stress like a pro. Good luck!