Dealing with Workplace Stress

give_up.jpgS-T-R-E-S-S. The six letter word that makes you cringe and makes the hair on your neck stand up. Most people have experienced some form of stress in one way or another. Today, I am speaking about workplace stress and providing some tips on how one can cope.

Stress, simply defined, is a state of mental tension and worry caused by a problem; something that causes strong feelings of worry or anxiety. Stress is a feeling that is often related to some sort of pressure; be it a time constraint, meeting a sales target, delivering bad news. That feeling we call stress is the body’s way of responding to the pressure.

We have all heard that stress can be devastating to our health. While a little pressure can be healthy to our motivation and help us get things done; large amounts of stress that lead to anxiety, sleepless nights and interruption of daily activities need to be managed and controlled.

To ensure that stress does not inhibit your well being please read through the following tips.

  1. Recognize when your stress levels become excessive. When we don’t recognize and manage our stress, we create a breeding ground for bigger problems. Uncontrolled stress can be signaled by the some of the following: sleep disturbance, fatigue, stomach problems, social withdrawal, concentration difficulties, poor productivity, loss of interest in work or a decrease in job performance. By recognizing these signs, one can find the tools needed to manage and decrease stress levels.
  1. Track your stressors. When you recognize your stress signals, you can track what may be causing them. Track on a calendar or in a journal the moments in which you feel the warning signs of stress start. This way you can look for patterns and determine what is causing the stress. When you can pinpoint exactly what is causing the discomfort, you can put tools in place to prevent the stress from becoming overwhelming.
  1. Take care of your health. Taking care of your health by exercising and eating well will help in managing those stressful feelings. When we feel good we are better prepared to handle situations when they become difficult. Be sure to get enough sleep; when we are tired everything seems more difficult and challenging. Fatigue can make a mountain out of a mole hill; adequate sleep will ensure you wake with energy to take on the day!
  1. Establish boundaries. In a world of constant demand, many people feel the constant pressure to be available 24/7. Depending on the nature of your role and the type of service you provide, it may be of benefit to not check emails and such while with your family and friends. Designate time to tend to those emails or inform your network of when you will be unavailable. This will reduce the possibility of work-life conflicts and the potential stressors that come with it.
  1. Self care. It is very important to take a time out, practice self care and re-charge your own batteries. Learn some relaxation techniques such as yoga, meditation or take a simple walk. Taking time for yourself will ensure that when you return to the fast pace of life’s demands, you return with a recharged and clear mindset.
  1. Talk about it. If you are feeling the overwhelming heat of your stressors, it is important to address those feelings with a friend, a supervisor or a professional who can help you work through your thoughts. Do not allow the stress to build up as it can easily lead to problems that could greatly affect your well being.

With everything we want to accomplish in life, do not allow stress to get in the way. Learn to manage these feelings so they do not become unbearable and overwhelming. Use these tips and practice stress management so you can take on the world!




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