With globalization and capitalism, the world is moving fast these days, and the workplace has become a very stressful environment for most people. Main reasons for stress at workplace are, not getting enough time for private life, uncertainty of future, lack of financial security, and an annoying boss among others.
The word stress is commonly used in everyday language, but it is often ill defined or misunderstood. Some argue that an over-usage of the word means stress is trivialized and has lost its recognition as significant cause of ill health but the fact is that it is a major epidemic. An American poll found that 89% of respondents had experienced serious stress at some point in their lives. The threat from stress is perceived so strongly in Japan that the Japanese even have a word for sudden death due to overwork, ‘karoushi’.
A number of studies have linked stress with conditions such as heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, depression and anxiety. Work-related stress has overtaken musculoskeletal disorders as the main cause of absence and ill health in the work sector .The stress at workplace can lead to loss of interest in work, strained relationship with family and friends, keeps us awake at night, and we feel annoyed most of the time of the day.
10 stress management hacks one needs to adopt to reduce stress at work:
If you want to ward off stress, then there is no better thing to do than to set aside some time of your day to exercise. Exercise not only will help you reduce occupational stress, but boost your self-esteem, keep anxiety and depression at bay, and improve your sleep.
- Eat well
The food you eat is directly linked to how you feel during the day. Eating healthy and well balanced meals reduces stress. Therefore, do not compromise your meals for work, because eating healthy breakfast and lunch will ensure that your productivity during the day increases. Avoid too much consumption of coffee, cheese, sugar, soft drinks, alcohol, butter, etc.
- Don’t compromise on Sleep
Remember the time when you had too much office work pending, that you had to work late till midnight, and you couldn’t get proper sleep? Well, you will also remember how stress and irritated you were the next day. It is important to make sure that you get proper sleep at night, otherwise your productivity on the next day will be low, and your work stress will be high. Most people feel refreshed and stress-free in the morning when they have slept for 7 -9 hours at night.
- Keep your Priorities Straight
There are days when we are overburdened with tasks—work on the 10 pending files on office desk, take the kids to school, take mom to the doctor, attend a conference, and what not. When this happens, the chaos can lead to a lot of workplace stress. In such situations, it is better to prioritize tasks that which thing is more important than the other, and then decide what we have to do first and what needs to be skipped. This is of course not always possible, but many times this can really make our life easier. Learn to say “no” to people when you can’t do what they need of you due to compelling reasons.
- Don’t take everything personally
Don’t take all the criticism or comments as an attack on your personality. A lot of criticism is only aimed at pointing out that what we have done is not the best of our work, and there’s a scope for improvement, so don’t take offence.
- Don’t be so hard on yourself
Many times, we are overly critical of ourselves and have lower value of self in our own perspective. This can be devastating and lead to a lot of stress at work or otherwise.
- Take small breaks and recharge your batteries
Working for long stretched hours can increase your stress and lower your interest. Make sure you take small breaks, take a deep breath, talk to someone for a minute, or listen to your favorite song, every few hours or so.
- Don’t give in to Bullying
Bullying is not just a playground thing for toddlers. If your boss or a colleague is bullying you at workplace, confront them, or complain to a superior or Human Resources. If nothing works, it may be the time to change your job.
- Take time out for social life
Yes, you are right; it is easier said than done. But spending time with family and friends is the best way to cope up with stress and being happy. Make sure you take time out for your family on weekly basis.
- Keep calm and Accept, Adapt, and Avoid
We cannot always control how things are. In such cases, it is best to accept what can be accepted, adapt to everything we can adapt to, and avoid what cannot be accepted or adapted to. This will make your life at workplace a lot easier, and reduce your stress.