The workplace can be a major source of stress for workers in America. The workload, drama in the workplace and job security (or lack of it) play a role in workplace stress. Stress has become so detrimental to our health that the World Health Organization has declared the negative effects of stress as a world-wide epidemic.
While you may not be able to eliminate stress in the workplace altogether, there are things you can to do manage it. Check out these 9 tips to cope with stress at work and ways you can handle stressful situations in the workplace.
Ways to Reduce Stress In The Workplace
1. Move Around. Studies have shown that walking for 2 minutes each hour can help reverse the effects of sitting for prolonged periods. It will make a positive impact on your physical and mental health; you will feel better and have more mental acuity.
2. Don’t Just React, Act. Do you act or react to circumstances around you? When you take control of a situation, you feel more empowered to create the results you want to see and you will be less stressed.
3. Breathe Deeply. When you leave a stressful situation, whether at work or anywhere, find a place to sit quietly and breathe deeply for a couple of minutes. If you meditate, do that. It will help you clear your mind, reduce your heart rate and calm your nerves. Then look back at the situation with fresh eyes and evaluate your next steps. This may help you to take action versus reacting to the stressful situation.
4. Don’t Stress Yourself Out. If you are self-confident, you have fewer reasons to worry about what other people think of you or the work that you are doing. Concentrate more on the work itself rather than what other people think of it. Although keep in mind that the work needs to be done correctly and timely.
5. Eliminate Interruptions. Or at least try to minimize them. If you are focused on a specific task, turn off e-mail notifications or close your e-mail program altogether. Train staff or co-workers to not interrupt during certain times. If someone comes to you with a question, determine if it has to be resolved immediately. If not, let them know you would be happy to help them when you are finished with what you are doing.
6. Eat Better. What you put into your body will affect you in many ways. If you eat a lot of fatty, processed foods with added sugars, you will feel sluggish and tired throughout the day and you will not be as sharp mentally. Eat healthier, whole foods to feel better, inside and out.
7. Sleep Well. A good night’s sleep can make a big difference the next day. Get 7 – 8 hours of sleep each night. If you can, try to be consistent with your sleep habits, going to bed and getting up at the same time each day. Eating better will not only help you during the day, but it will help you sleep better at night. This includes limiting the amount of caffeine and alcohol you consume and when. Managing stress can also help you sleep better at night, which in turn makes you sharper the next day.
8. Prioritize. Do you remember when you were in school? Did you finish your projects well in advance or were you working on them the morning they were due? In work, as in school, learn to prioritize what the most important tasks are so you can finish them long before a deadline. If a task becomes urgent, that may mean added stress since a looming deadline is usually associated with it.
9. Recognize Your Employees or Co-Workers. Everyone loves to know that their hard work is noticed. Simply saying ‘thank you’ or ‘good job’ can go a long way to brightening someone else’s day. A positive side effect is that the person saying ‘thank you’ will feel good about it too. Consider a hand-written note, a company-wide e-mail or a shout-out during a staff meeting.
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