It seems like, with all the neat, time-saving technology we have at our fingertips, we should all be doing less work than ever before. However, the promises of the past have not come to fruition, and according to forbes.com, the average professional in business has between 30 and 100 projects to juggle at any given time. Not only that, but the very technology that was supposed to have saved us from drudgery is causing us to be interrupted at work (email, texts, phone calls) around seven times an hour!
What all of this means is that the average worker, even those of us lucky enough to be in careers we love, are experiencing very high levels of work-related stress on a regular basis.
If you’re one of the many feeling stressed out by work, here are some things to help you deal with the situation:
Work Out What You Can Control
When you’re experiencing work-related stress, it can be very helpful to work out which aspects of your situation you can control and which you can’t. You might not be able to control how much work your boss assigns you for example, but you can control turning off your phone when you leave the office. Exercise control where you can, and learn to let go of the stuff you can’t. This will help to eliminate at least some of the stress you feel.
I know, I know, meditation seems to be the solution to every problem right now—but it is very helpful for dealing with workplace stress. For example, taking a few minutes out to relax and clear your thoughts before a stressful meeting will help to prevent you from freaking out. Mindfulness meditation, when practised regularly, will help you to stop dwelling on all the things that have gone wrong during the working day, so you don’t feel so bad.
Take Advantage of Employee Well-Being Schemes
Many companies offer a range of employee wellbeing schemes, which can include anything from counselling sessions to free yoga classes. If you’re feeling seriously stressed out by your place of employment, don’t be afraid or embarrassed to use them. After all, the companies that have such measures in place tend to be genuinely invested in the health and happiness of their employees—they want you to take advantage.
Get Rid of Interruptions
If it’s the constant interruptions from email or messenger notifications that is stressing you out, eliminate those distractions! Often, being bombarded by notifications can actually prevent you from getting your work done in a timely manner as it causes you to lose focus.
Set up your email account with filters, so that only the most pressing get through. Even go as far as allotting a specific time to look at your emails! Talk to your colleagues and managers and request that they only call, text, or email you during certain times, explaining that it is more productive to do so. And when you’re finally home, turn off your phone (or at least find a way of filtering out work stuff!) You might not be able to completely eliminate these interruptions, but if you try, I’m, sure you can make some of them a lot less troublesome.
A lot of us think that the best way to get through the work day is by pushing ourselves as hard as we can to get through our assignments as quickly as possible. This might be true if you’re in a workplace where you can leave as soon as your work is done. However, if you’re expected to be in the office for 8 hours a day, taking the slow and steady approach, and taking lots of breaks, is likely to lower your stress levels. Even doing the whole work hard for 50 minutes and break for ten each hour can make a massive difference to how you feel during and after the working day.
Look After Your Body
Eating a healthy diet that’s rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and legumes, and low in sugar and junk foods will automatically take the stress off your system. Exercising will have a similar effect, with the added bonus that it’ll help you sleep better at night. So, even though stress might make you want to eat junk and become a couch potato—fight it if you want to feel good again.
Until next time,