Do you constantly feel stressed at work? Are you burnt out and overwhelmed? Do those feelings come home with you after work and transfer to your personal life? If so, you aren’t alone. More than a quarter of workers in the U.S. consider their jobs to be the top cause of stress in their lives. Stress-related issues cost companies more than $150 billion a year.
Learning to manage your stress can transform your work experience. A growing number of companies are creating wellness and mindfulness programs, but it really comes down to you taking the initiative and getting in control of your stress.
Here are five ways to manage workplace stress.
1. Identify stress triggers. Take a step back and realize what causes those stressful and overwhelming feelings. It could be a demanding boss, long work hours, difficult co-workers, or a cutthroat company culture. Identifying the triggers to your workplace stress can help you realize what changes you need to make to create a more peaceful and comfortable work experience. Set boundaries to keep the triggers at bay.
2. Stay organized. A messy workspace or unstructured day can add stress and lower your productivity. Take a few minutes at the start of the day to clean your work area and prioritize your tasks for the day. Other tasks may come up, but understanding the tasks that are most important puts you in control of your work and schedule.
3. Set reasonable expectations. Many people feel stress when they expect perfection but fall short. Instead of setting your sights too high and feeling stressed when you can’t reach that level, set reasonable expectations about what you can achieve. Aim for high-quality work that helps the company but that allows you to still have a positive mindset to help your team and organization.
4. Exercise. Get your body moving. Even taking a short walk on your lunch break can lift your mood and bring a fresh perspective. Sitting in one place can be discouraging and make stressful situations feel even worse. When you feel stressed, take a break for fresh air, go on a run, or try a new exercise class. Instead of combating stress with unhealthy habits, you’re doing something good for your mental and physical health.
5. Find an outlet. If work dominates every aspect of your life, you’ll never be able to completely step away from the stress. Find something that allows you to relax outside of work. It could be reading, hiking, or cooking. An outlet helps you relax and get your mind off work, while also giving you something to look forward to during stressful times.
Workplace stress is incredibly common in our modern world, but it doesn’t have to be. Take the steps to manage your stress and create a better work environment. Take it one day at a time and celebrate even small successes.
Learn how you can better equip yourself and your organization to deal with the major workplace changes that are taking place with my free Future of Work Training Series today!