A little stress at work comes with the territory, but the level and cause will often vary. The root of your stress may run the gamut from heavy demands on your time to feelings of a stagnant career. Regardless of the reason, one thing is certain. You have to proactively manage your stress at work to get through the day. Here are 5 simple ways to help you feel more in control.
Multitasking is a way of life for most employees. But when you realize you might have more on your plate than you can handle, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. The best way to eliminate that stress and make sure nothing falls through the cracks is to prioritize your work and schedule it. Time block activities so that you have a dedicated period to focus on completing necessary tasks. Yes, that includes setting time aside to answer emails and return phone calls. Don’t let them distract you from other scheduled tasks. Instead, commit to 30 minutes of catch up 3 times a day to comb through your inbox. Having a plan of attack will do wonders for stress management. If you realize you can’t do it all, start delegating. At the very least, you’ll be able to communicate any timing issues to your manager well before you run over your deadlines.
Pushing through a moment of stress rarely works. You end up trying to get work done while being well aware of the stress you’re trying to ignore. Instead, just stop what you’re doing and pause for a moment. Literally put whatever is happening at your desk on hold and take a deep breath. Then take another and another. While you’re at it, close your eyes if you can. Deep breathing exercises offer an immediate impact on elevated stress and blood pressure levels that help calm you down so you can get back to what needs to be done with more clarity.
If the stress is overwhelming enough, breathing exercises alone may not bring you back to baseline. Sometimes a physical separation from your environment is required. Taking a walk outside or sitting in a coffee shop for a while will allow you to clear your head and gain perspective on your situation. Distance can also provide you the opportunity to see your situation from a different angle. When sitting at your desk, all you see is your work and the pressure that comes along with it. When you’re separated from it, you have the breathing room to think about it without the pressure. Often the result is a more innovative approach and a more manageable solution!
Often times stress is a result of feeling that you have too much on your shoulders that you are solely responsible for. The truth of the matter is, you can always ask for help. It’s best if you explain the situation to your boss, that you are juggling a lot at the moment and may need to delegate some of the work. Even if you don’t need the help, simply talking about feeling stressed can bring relief. Keeping your feelings bottled up can exacerbate the situation. Tell a friend, co-worker, boss or therapist and you’ll feel like a bit of the weight has been lifted.
Surprisingly, stress can be self-imposed. We all want to do good work and succeed. But you may be setting unrealistic expectations for yourself. If that sounds like you, then you’re probably too hard on yourself. Try to be more accepting. That means accepting your whole self, your flaws and your fabulousness. And finally, remember to treat yourself with the compassion and understanding you have for others.
Stress at work is par for the course. But how you handle it will have a big impact on your happiness and health! Try implementing these tips next time stress strikes you at work.
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All Rights Reserved.