Stress at work is a common problem that can affect many of us at some time. Feeling some tension is normal, especially if you’re facing an upcoming deadline or challenging task. But when work stress becomes chronic, it can end up affecting both your physical and emotional well-being. Stress can bring with it significant health problems that can be as small as cold or flu-like symptoms or can range to potentially serious problems such as heart disease.
As it is nearly impossible to find a low-stress job, the best approach to dealing with work stress is to take on a proactive approach to finding coping strategies. Here are our top management techniques to reduce stress at work.
#1 Have A Good Start To The Day
You wouldn’t realise how much a stressful morning can then affect your mood when you arrive at work. You will be more sensitive and react more emotionally to office demands if you have arrived stressed and worked up. Many factors can bring this on such as dealing with the children, road traffic, lack of breakfast. If you try to start your day right with good planning, proper food, and a positive attitude, you will be surprised at how much easier it is to deal with the demands when you arrive at work.
#2 Understand What Is Expected From You
This is a key link to employee burnout. If you are unsure what is expected from you, what the task is that you need to complete or if things keep changing at the last minute then this can become extremely stressful for you. This is easy to remedy by talking to your supervisor or manager. Have a clear conversation about what they expect and discuss ways to reach the goal. This will help to relieve some of your stress, and maybe even theirs too!
#3 Be Organised
Feeling stressed at work can be closely linked to your time management of the tasks (Time on Task) you need to complete. At the start of the week, make a list of what needs to be done and rank them in importance, or time they need to be completed. When you complete one, cross it off the list. The physical act of seeing a task completed in front of you will relieve your stress and help you to see that you are completing what you need to. Being organised will also mean that you can avoid the workspace clutter that can also be linked to work stress. What is stress ?
#4 Be Realistic
Trying to be a perfectionist can cause problems for you at work, and also for those around you. Although it is a great quality to want everything you do to be perfect, it is an unrealistic demand on yourself and can lead to burnout. A good strategy to deal with this is to try your best in every situation and task that you complete and make time to congratulate yourself on your efforts. By doing this you may find that you are more productive at work with less stress.
#5 Balance Your Work And Personal Life
If you find that you are leaving work late, and still then working from home at all hours or cancelling or missing out on planned events because you are working at home. These are key signs that your work and personal life balance is out. Being available to work around the clock will lead to burnout. Set boundaries with your work colleagues and managers about when you can and can’t be contacted outside of work, or when you will check and respond to emails. Set aside specific time for socialising and spending time with family and friends as your family are just as, or even more, important. How to create a postive work life balance.
#6 Have A Work Support Network
During times of stress, it is really important to surround yourself with a support network. This can be your friends and family but also ensure that you are supported at work. Being properly supported by your management can significantly alleviate workplace stress. Set up a time to talk calmly with your manager or supervisor about the stress that you are feeling and the challenging tasks. Approach the conversation as a problem-solving chat rather than a complaint. Make sure you leave the conversation with a solution and that both parties feel happy. How to create a positive workplace environment.
From time to time it’s good to seek validation in what we do. Stop the world for a moment and reflect on our lives, is it going where we want it, do we need to change direction and the people around us. Does work make us miserable, are we capable of changing anything. We need to recognise when we need to seek help.
Interested in ensuring you are looking after your employees? Our Mental Health First Aid Training Course is essential for any businesses that want to look after their employee’s health. For more information, please get in touch.