As its Mental Health Awareness Week we have put together this short guide on work place stress.
Stress isn’t always bad. A little bit of stress can help you stay focused, energetic, and able to meet new challenges in the workplace. It’s what keeps you on your toes during a presentation or alert to preventing accidents or costly mistakes. But in today’s hectic world, the workplace can too often seem like an emotional roller coaster. Long hours, tight deadlines, and ever-increasing demands can leave you feeling worried, drained, and overwhelmed. And when stress exceeds your ability to cope, it stops being helpful and starts causing damage to your mind and body—as well as to your job satisfaction.
If stress on the job is interfering with your work performance, health, or personal life, it’s time to take action. No matter what you do for a living, or how stressful your job is, there are plenty of things you can do to reduce your overall stress levels and regain a sense of control.
The people at www.mind.org.uk have put together these tips for managing workplace stress.
|What’s making you stressed at work
|What you can do to prevent or reduce stress
|Having problems with your workload
|Ask for help. Everyone needs a hand from time to time.
Discuss your workload with your manager.
Talk about setting realistic targets and how you can solve any problems you’re having.
Balance your time. Occasionally you may need to work longer hours to get something done, but try to claim this time back later if you can. Don’t do too much at once.
Give each task your full attention. It often takes longer if you try to do too much at the same time.
Reward yourself for achievements. It is easy to focus on what needs to be done next and forget to reward yourself for what you have already accomplished.
Be realistic. You don’t have to be ‘perfect’ all the time.
|Poor work-life balance
|Take short breaks throughout the day as well as at least half-an-hour away from your desk at lunch.
Go for a short walk outside if you can.
Take some time off. If things get too much, taking a few days off or a long weekend can help you feel refreshed and actually increase your productivity in the long-run.
Use the holiday you’re entitled to.
Don’t let your life be work. Nurture your outside relationships, interests and your skills that your job doesn’t use.
Develop end of day habits. Do something at the end of each working day, such as tidying your desk or making a list of what needs to be done tomorrow. This can help you to switch off from work.
|Lack of support
|Make a Wellness Action Plan to map out what causes you stress and what keeps you well at work.
Make use of other support already on offer. Some organisations provide employee assistance programmes (EAPs) which give free advice and counselling.
Others have internal systems such as mentoring or buddy systems.
If you don’t feel supported, communicate this. If you feel you can’t talk to your boss, speak or write to your human resources department or trade union representative if you have one.
Develop good relationships with your colleagues. Connecting with them can help to build up a network of support and make being at work more enjoyable.