Workplace Stress is reported to be experienced by many employees, so the need to de-stress has never been more important. An acceptable level of stress is normal, even helpful, keeping us alert and focused in the workplace. However, in today’s world, the deadlines, long hours, targets and extra responsibilities can take their toll.
When the stress is ongoing and not managed it can begin to affect your ability to cope, damaging your mental, emotional and physical wellbeing. Excessive stress in the workplace can begin to seep into all areas of your life, affecting not only your workplace performance and sense of satisfaction, but your personal life also.
If you are experiencing workplace stress, irrespective of your occupation, you are not alone and nor are you powerless. There are a several tools you can use to help reduce its impact, regaining balance and satisfaction.
- Start the conversation – A huge weight can often be lifted by simply sharing how you feel with a friend, colleague or family member. Talking through issues with a good listener can help you release stress, reflect and reset to a place of calm. So, check in with your colleagues and initiate a conversation, put down your smart phone and connect face to face with those around you.
- Rethink your time management – Establishing a balance between work and play is key to preventing burn out. Create healthy boundaries with regards to your time, don’t over commit yourself, take your breaks and ensure you start and check out for the day with some healthy relaxation techniques.
- Prioritise your tasks for the day ahead and follow by breaking them down into smaller, more achievable steps. Recognise your achievements incrementally over the day and feel a greater sense of satisfaction and completion. If necessary, hand over some of the responsibility to a colleague to share the load if it is too heavy. Assertive, respective communication is the key to getting the job done and everyone feeling valued along the way.
- Be organised and clean in the workplace and at home, saving you time, creating space and freeing your mind of stress.
- Watch your thoughts – try flipping any negative thoughts and focus on what you can control, do your best and give yourself a pat on the back! Promote a positive work culture for yourself and others by avoiding any unnecessary negative commentary in the workplace. Try focusing on the aspects of your work that you do enjoy, finding more purpose and joy throughout the day.
- Be proactive – if your performance is being impacted by workplace stress then start a conversation with your employer and together seek to navigate specific solutions. Avoid blaming, accusatory language, focusing rather on positive steps and a plan moving forward. It may be necessary to clarify your job description, explore for alternate duties, request a different location or take time off if burn out is inevitable.
- Prioritise a healthy diet, a good night’s sleep and exercise.
Have a laugh! Humour is a great stress relief, so share a joke or funny story with others when it’s appropriate to do so.