10 ways to manage stress in the work place! How do you cope with stress at work?
For the majority of us who work, be it the job of our dreams or just something to pay the bills, we will all experience stress at some point in our career, possible each working day! Avoiding stressful situations at work can be difficult, and many of us find ourselves taking that stress home too, which is no good for our health or our relationships.
Here are a few quick and helpful tips to managing stress in the work place.
Coping with stress at work
Do not skip lunch – You are given a lunch break for a reason, so don’t skip out on it, more importantly if it is a paid lunch break too! You need to refuel your body with healthy, nutritious foods, preferably something that slowly releases carbohydrates over the next few hours, as opposed to a quick sugar fix from the vending machine. Bring your own lunch; salads, pastas, sandwiches, even last nights left over lasagna.
Do not eat lunch at your desk – You’ve completed the above step, you’ve brought a long a lunch and are finally taking that well deserved break – just take it away from your desk! It’s a fact that those who eat lunch at their work station are more likely to start checking emails, making notes on current projects and in general, ‘working’ through their lunch. Try heading to a designated staff area, or leave the building all together. Just make sure it’s some place you can avoid all work related tasks for a while!
Dine in a group – Make your lunch group a social occasion, dine with co-workers in the staff room, or organize a weekly lunch outing to a nearby eatery. Try to avoid work related conversation and really get to know the people you work with – you probably spend more time each day with them than your own family!
What do you love about your job? – Why did you apply for the job in the first place? Can you recall that buzz of excitement on the first day of work? Perhaps you work with an insanely awesome group of people, or you are doing something you always dreamed of. When things start to get tough just remember what brought you there in the first place and recall those images and feeling to mind.
Meditate – I’m not suggesting you get on the floor and start to hum, but when things start to get tough, work piling up all around you or your boss is on your back, just close your eyes and concentrate on your breathing for a few minutes. Keep your mind clear and focus on the movement of your chest, the feeling of your diaphragm rising, your lungs filling, then sensation of exhaling each breath. Repeat until you feel calmer, then re-asses the situation.
To-do lists – At the start of each day, make a list – mental or physical, of the things that need to be done, from the basics of refilling the printer tray, to ordering supplies, telephoning contacts, sending emails etc. Keep the list simple, as few words as possible for each bullet point. Use it as a reference point if you start to get side tracked. If the bullet points are short and concise, each task looks more accomplishable.
ASK for help – It is not a sign of weakness or defeatism if you ask for help from a colleague. You are a member of the team, and no matter your position in the team, you are all contributing to the end goal. Do not fret over something you do not understand, find someone who does and ask them for it. If you don’t feel comfortable asking them outright, bring it up in conversation, ask them for a ‘suggestion’ and take it from there.
Anticipate problems – If you can see a potential problem, the proverbial spanner in the works, address it before it has a chance to catch on. If you can, take steps now to avoid the problem later or, make a note of the potential issue and the solution, so if it does happen to come up – you already have the solution!
Reward yourself – You’ve met the deadline, finished top in the group, sold that last unit, or got through a difficult day – whatever the issues reward yourself for over coming it and coming out on top. Reward yourself!
Be the early bird - Get to work early, not necessarily to start earlier (unless you can finish earlier by doing so), but to avoid that stress of racing into work. Aim to get into work 20 – 30 minutes before you need to. Use this time to have a cup of tea/coffee, read a book, catch up on blogs or social networking, or write your weekly shopping list – anything that can be considered a relaxing task! You will start your day feeling much calmer and collected.
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