Stress In The Workplace

Reduce and Manage Workplace Stress

Regardless of occupation, seniority, or salary level, excessive stress can interfere with productivity and affect your physical and emotional health. Manage workplace stress is not about making huge changes to everything but rather thinking changes with you. Start by taking responsibility for improving your physical and emotional well-being.

Some warning signs of excessive stress at work

  • Feeling anxious, irritable, or depressed
  • Apathy, loss of interest in work
  • Problems sleeping
  • Fatigue
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Muscle tension or headaches
  • Stomach problems
  • Social withdrawal
  • Loss of sex drive
  • Using alcohol or drugs to cope

Think about taking care of yourself

Just take one step at a time & make more positive lifestyle choices.
Its a good idea to get moving. Aerobic exercise—activity that raises your heart rate and makes you sweat—is a hugely effective way to lift your mood, increase energy, sharpen focus, and relax both your body and your mind.

Low blood sugar can make you feel anxious and irritable, while eating too much can make you lethargic. By eating small but frequent meals throughout the day, you can help your body maintain an even level of blood sugar and avoid these swings in mood. Learn more.
Drink alcohol in moderation and avoid nicotine

Too much alcohol can cause anxiety as it wears off. Drinking to relieve work stress may lead to alcohol abuse and dependence. Similarly, smoking when you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed may seem calming, but nicotine is a powerful stimulant – leading to higher, not lower, levels of anxiety.

Get enough sleep

Stress and worry can cause insomnia, however, lack of sleep can leave you vulnerable to even more stress. It’s much easier to keep your emotional balance when you’re well-rested.

Simple steps you can take to regain control over yourself and the situation.

  • Try to leave earlier in the morning
  • Create a balanced schedule.
  • Don’t over-commit yourself.
  • Take regular breaks

Task management

-Prioritize tasks
-Break projects into small steps.
-Delegate responsibility where you can.
-Think about compromising. Be willing bend a little.

Improve emotional well being

Manage and use your emotions in positive and constructive ways.
Communicate with others in ways that bring people to you, overcome differences, repair wounded feelings, and defuse tension and stress.

Skills that you need to master in order to raise your emotional intelligence and manage stress at work.

  • Pay attention to your feelings and factor them into your decision making at work.
  • Recognize and effectively use the nonverbal cues that make up 95-98% of our communication process.
  • Develop the capacity to meet challenges with humor.
  • Resolve conflict positively.

Reduce job stress by breaking bad habits
-Think about how to eliminate self-defeating behaviors
-Many of us make job stress worse with negative thoughts and behavior. If you can turn around these self-defeating habits, you’ll find employer-imposed stress easier to handle.
-Resist perfectionism.
-Clean up your act. If you’re always running late, set your clocks and watches fast and give yourself extra time.
-Flip your negative thinking. If you see the downside of every situation and interaction, you’ll find yourself drained of energy and motivation. Try to think positively about your work, avoid negative-thinking co-workers, and pat yourself on the back about small accomplishments
-Don’t try to control the uncontrollable.

Five Ways to Dispel Stress

  1. Take time away.
  2. Talk it over with someone.
  3. Connect with others at work.
  4. Look for humor in the situation

HelpGuide.org

Pressure Valves: Finding ways to handle stress can keep employees happy and productive

“Studies show that work-related stress is a big problem. About 30 percent of U.S. workers feel extremely stressed at work, according to a Yale University study. About 75 percent of workers feel the typical worker has more on-the-job stress than a generation ago, according to another study, by Princeton Survey Research Associates.

Stress can cause workers to lose their concentration and decrease performance, making a bad situation worse. And long-term exposure to stress can harm an employee’s health. Entire medical conferences have been held on the link between job-related stress and health problems such as heart disease and high blood pressure,” says Mike Stobbe

So what can you do about stress?

Some workers have other stress-relief measures. Yoga, deep-breathing exercises and visualization of relaxing or humorous scenarios can be a big help, said Ellyn Kirschner, a Charlotte consultant who helps employees with stress and morale.

The San Diego Union Tribune Business Section, Monday October 22, 2001

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