Let’s face it—no matter what industry you’re in and what kind of job you have, you’re bound to feel stressed at work at one point or another. There are a lot of things that can be blamed for your stress, such as daily commuting challenges, traffic, and low salary, to name a few. Unfortunately, workplace stress is inevitable.
Work-related stress has been linked to various health problems, ranging from simple colds and flu to more serious heart and metabolic problems. Many employees decide to leave their stressful work, hoping to get away and find better opportunities—only to get hired for an equally stressful position.
You see, all kinds of work cause a certain level of stress. What really matters is how you respond to workplace stress and how you manage it.
Check out these five ways to handle workplace stress and be happier at your job.
1. Recognize your stressors
There are certain factors that often go hand-in-hand with workplace stress. These stressors include the following:
- Low salary
- Too much workload
- Lack of motivation (work that is not challenging or engaging)
- Lack of support from managers and teammates
- Office politics
- Conflicting expectations
By knowing what triggers your stress, you’ll be better able to control it. When you notice yourself beginning to feel the stress, stand up from your desk, walk away for a bit and take a breath. Getting a healthy snack such as salad or fruits can help you keep your mind away from the source of your stress.
2. Start your day off right
One of the best ways to handle workplace stress is to get started in managing it even before you come to work. Many employees have a lot of other responsibilities that they take care of before going to work. Working parents, for instance, need to wake up earlier to help kids prepare for school. Some need to drop their kids at school or daycare.
All of these can already wear one down even before they arrive at work. As a result, the added work-related stress makes things worse. To help you keep your cool during work hours, make sure you avoid getting stressed in the morning. Sleep well in the evening and eat a nice, healthy breakfast.
3. Stay organized
Some argue that creative people function better when they leave their stuff anywhere, as they were. However, a disorganized workstation can actually make you feel more stressed than you’re supposed to be. All the clutter can easily distract you and as you get distracted, you might not be able to work efficiently. This can cause even more stress.
Furthermore, it would be nice to plan ahead and organize your schedule. This way, you’ll have a clear path for the day and you’ll be able to prioritize the most important tasks.
4. Stop multitasking
Many people think that multitasking is a nice skill to have. Unfortunately, it may be the opposite in some cases. Multitasking prevents you from focusing on one task at a time. As a result, your productivity and the quality of your work may suffer. When multitasking, you also tend to handle more tasks than you’re actually supposed to tackle for the day. In the end, you might feel tired and overworked.
Instead of multitasking, consider chunking, which is the method of focusing on just one task at a certain period.
5. Take lunch walks
Lunch breaks are not meant to be spent on your desk. Go out, breathe outside air. Walking also offers mental and physical benefits. You can treat your lunch walks as part of your exercise routine. Additionally, going out for a walk allows you to blow off steam that may have been building in the last four hours that you were working.