Experiencing work related stress is a common occurrence. Work puts us under pressure, especially if there is a deadline involved or we are coping with a demanding task. Although, stress at the workplace is normal, too much of it can have harmful consequences. People who can’t cope with stress might see a decline in their productivity at work. Workplace stress can harm people outside the office too. Chronic stress can take its toll on a person’s physical and emotional health.
Here are tips on how to help yourself if you feel the stress getting the better of you.
Learn to fight stress
Stress can often lead down the path of unhealthy choices. Some people turn to vices like alcohol or cigarettes, others might find consolation in junk food. When you feel tense, it is important to vent. Instead of vices, turn to exercise. Working out can help you beat stress and also it is beneficial for your health. Activities like jogging, yoga, recreational sports are all good choices. Venting doesn’t necessarily mean exercise, it can be an activity that you enjoy. Reading, spending time with your family, hobbies, all of these can help keep your mind of work and stress.
Get enough sleep
Too much stress can lead into a downward spiral. It can keep you up at night, preventing much needed quality sleep. It’s noticeable how easily irritable people are after a sleepless night. This will only lead to more stress. A good night’s sleep can make a person more productive, and help them through stressful situations. Sleeping for 7 to 8 hours a night seems to be the sweet spot for quality sleep. Light emitted from screens (TV, smartphones, computers) can wreck your sleep. It inhibits natural production of melatonin; this is why you should turn off all screens one hour before sleeping.
Relaxation techniques can help greatly reduce stress. Meditation and deep breathing can help unwind after a stressful day. It doesn’t have to take up half an hour, meditating for 10 minutes a day is beneficial. It will lower blood pressure and help you focus on the positive. This way, even in stressful situations, you can maintain your composure and fight off stress. Next time you get swamped with work, take a short break and relax yourself. Stop everything and breathe deep. This can cancel out distractions and help you focus on the task at hand.
Stop beating yourself up
Work related stress is devastating for our productivity. Sometimes we make matters even worse with negative thinking and our behavior. Maintaining composure and positive outlook can stop us from beating ourselves down. Always going for perfection is like setting yourself up to fail. Unrealistic goals can lead to disappointments. Try your best, that is all you should do. Negative thinking can also wreck your productivity. Try and stay positive, and avoid co-workers with negative attitude.
Don’t try to control everything. How other people behave is not up to you, but your reactions are. Try to react positively even if everything seems stacked against you. Lighten up the mood by telling a joke or an anecdote to your co-workers. Always look on the bright side and try to find humor in a stressful situation. If stress at work is overwhelming and coping is too hard, you can always turn to a professional for psychological assessment.
Improve your diet
Diet can dictate your behavior at work. Eating healthy meals will maintain your blood sugar. This will allow you to focus better at work and make you less anxious. Try to stay away from too much sugar and refined carbs. These foods are only temporary solutions and will result in a mood crash. Caffeine, alcohol and food that contains preservatives can have bad effects on your mood. Having a diet that includes omega-3 fatty acids can help focus and increase productivity. Best sources of omega-3 are fish such as salmon and herring.
Work-related stress can be harmful not just for your productivity at work, but also your health and personal life. There are numerous techniques to help you stave off stress. Learning and applying those techniques can lead to a healthier and improved life.
Today’s post is brought to you by guest contributor Diana Smith. She is a full time mom of two beautiful girls very passionate when it comes to exercising and healthy dieting. In her free time she enjoys jogging and preparing healthy meals for her family. Visit Diana’s google+ and twitter sites for more great tips!