Living in these contemporary times can be overwhelming. No one can deny that life today has more demands than ever. Juggling family and career, deadlines and standards to meet, colleagues to compete with – these are just a fraction of the issues that you have to deal with on a daily basis; and if these issues are not handled properly, they can lead to stress.
Stress has been the object of study by scientists in recent years. It occurs when a person is under emotional and mental strain because of unfavorable circumstances. Not only have more and more people become affected by stress, it has also been found to have a significant impact on health and relationships. Stress can come from different sources; however, one of its major causes is work.
Work stress can happen when the demands of a job do not fit your capabilities and needs as a worker. In terms of job performance, you need to distinguish between a challenge and work stress. A challenge motivates you to learn new skills, increases your productivity and leaves you feeling satisfied and fulfilled. In contrast, work-related stress can result from too much workload, a low salary, poor job security, lack of support from colleagues and management, and conflicting job demands. Under these working conditions, satisfaction can turn into exhaustion and discouragement.
Fortunately, there are ways by which you can manage stress in the work place and minimize its negative impact on your health and in your life.
Identify the source of stress and resolve it
Pinpoint where your work stress is coming from and seek a solution. If it is too much work load, you can delegate tasks or talk to your supervisor. It the problem is time management, an effective solution would be to create a to-do list at the start of each day to guide you in accomplishing tasks. If you are stressed about a conflict with another employee, think of ways on how it can be resolved. By taking a pro-active approach in solving problems, you will be able to do your job more efficiently and minimize the stress not only to yourself but also to your co-workers.
Do away with bad habits that can cause stress
Stressors can be external and internal. The degree of stress you experience at work depends largely on your attitude and perception. If you have a tendency to be a perfectionist, realize that doing too much to accomplish unrealistic goals will only make you feel like a failure. Instead, do you best and know that it is enough. In addition, you can practice positive thinking. Seeing only the bad side in situations will rob you of your motivation to do your job well. Learn to congratulate yourself with every task you accomplish, regardless of how small it may be. Try to befriend colleagues who are dedicated and committed, and be inspired by them.
Take a deep breath
At work, there will certainly be times when you will feel overwhelmed. You might be up to your neck with paperwork or preparing for a very crucial presentation. Whatever stressful situation you are in, one of the best relaxation techniques that you can try is deep breathing. According to experts, deep breathing increases the supply of oxygen in the brain and imparts a state of calm in the nervous system. When you take a deep breath, you focus on your body instead of the worries in your mind, making you relax.
Technology has made everyone very accessible. Even outside office hours, it is very easy to be bothered by work-related concerns through emails, instant messages and phone calls. When you do not handle these interruptions properly, your private time can quicly turn into work time, which can lead to stress. Setting boundaries to protect your time is a skill you have to learn; and this means saying no sometimes.
Take care of your physical health
Being physically fit will allow your body to handle stress more efficiently. Even if stress is primarily mental and emotional, it has a tremendous effect on the body and can result in lack of appetite, fatigue, insomnia, headache, upset stomach and skin problems. You can help your body cope with stress by eating healthy and getting sufficient sleep every night. Engaging in regular physical activity is likewise beneficial, as is avoiding excessive consumption of alcohol and tobacco.
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