How to cope with stress at work
- May 25, 2022
- Posted by: Jignyasa Bal
- Category: Blogs
Any job can have stressful rudiments, even if it is someone’s passion. Everyone at some point in their career has felt the pressure of work-related stress. It can be the pressure to meet a deadline or to fulfill a grueling obligation. But when work stress becomes habitual, it can be dangerous to both physical and emotional health.
Some of the damaging effects of excessive stress are:
- Deterioration of brain structures
- Increased anxiety
- Inability to cope with future stress
- Compromised immune system
- Increased inflammation
- Chronic depression
- The onset of PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder)
You can’t always avoid the pressures that come with the job. Yet you can find ways to manage work-related stress.
How to manage stress?
Track your stressors
Keep a journal for a few weeks. Record the situations that induce the most stress and also your reactions to them. Identify the people involved, the circumstances, and the physical setting. What did you do during those situations? What did you think at that time? How did you feel? Did you raise your voice? Started eating? Went for a walk? Notes can help you notice the patterns among your stressors and your responses to them.
Develop healthy responses
What do you do when you are stressed? Argue with people near to you? Start binge eating or drinking? Rather than fighting stress with bad alternatives, make healthy choices when you feel the pressure rise. Start with exercise – in any form. Do yoga. Go for a long walk or run. Play any game. Any form of physical exertion is helpful.
Another important activity is making time for hobbies. Pursue whatever you like. Be it reading a novel, going to a show, or playing games with your family, make sure to set aside time for the pastime that makes you happy.
Good-quality sleep is also vital for stress management. Make a habit of sleeping early and get 7 to 8 hours of rest. Minimize stimulating activities, such as computer and television use, or caffeine intake at night.
Maintain work-life balance
In the post-pandemic hybrid world, it’s easy to feel pressure to be available round the clock. But, it is imperative to establish some work-life boundaries. Be there for yourself. Decide your break as per your preference. Yet, keep in mind that separating these two realms will help you in reducing the potential for work-life conflict and the stress that comes with it.
Make time to recharge
“Switch off” from work – have some me-time when you are neither engaging in work-related activities nor thinking about work. This is part of the recovery process – to get back to the pre-stress setting. Whenever possible, take a vacation. If you can not take time off, make it a habit to turn off your work mode for some time every day.
Learn to relax
Meditation, deep breathing exercises, and mindfulness can help with excessive stress. Start slow if you are new to it. Take a few minutes each day to focus on basic activities like eating, breathing, or walking. This will enable you to focus on any particular activity for a long without distraction.
Talk to your colleagues
Have an open conversation with your colleagues and seniors. Your purpose is not to bring up a list of complaints. It is to collectively figure out an effective plan for managing the stressors you’ve identified. It will benefit you, your colleagues, and your company.
Stress reduces when shared. Even simple talk about your problems and your associating emotions can be healing. Talk to your trusted friends and family members and take their opinions when it is necessary. If you are still getting overwhelmed by work stress, consult a psychologist. They will guide you to better manage stress and change unhealthy behavior.
There is no shame or taboo in admitting that we might not be in the best of our forms or we need help to get out of our own heads. We all live in the same era. We all are in the same boat. There is nothing to hide. We are each other’s companions.
Just reach out and break the ice.