If you regularly experience work-related stress, you are not alone. 80 percent of workers reported feeling stressed at work, according to the Workplace Stress Survey from the American Institute of Stress. Just because stress in the workplace is common does not mean you just have to resign yourself to it. If left unhandled, ongoing stress at work can negatively impact your work performance, personal life, and physical health.
Learn more about what to do if you are feeling stressed at work:
● Build a Support Network
Having people to talk to who understand what you are going through can be a great stress reliever. Try to reach out to a few coworkers you trust and who you feel comfortable discussing your current situation with. They likely are going through the same thing and it can be comforting to know you are not alone and that they may be able to give you tips to deal with it.
Be sure to listen to them as well, rather than just venting, to build a mutually supportive network. If you do not currently have much of a connection with your colleagues, use your stress as a motivating factor to start being more social with them. Even if you do not feel comfortable talking about your stress, just having friendly interactions throughout the day can boost your spirits.
● Take Care of Your Physical Health
It can be challenging to effectively handle work stress if your physical health is not a priority. Take care of yourself by getting enough sleep, regular exercise, and healthy foods. When you properly fuel your body, it will offset some of the negative impacts of stress. Stress can make you more prone to illness and disease, being short-tempered, and having difficulty concentrating. Plus, when you are consistently stressed out from work, you are more likely to get sick and need to take time off – which can then make you more stressed by falling behind on work.
● Focus on Aspects Within Your Control
Stress at work is often due to circumstances outside of your control, but there are steps you can take to prevent making things worse. Focus on aspects within your control:
○ Tidy your workspace so you can easily find what you need.
○ Change your mindset – look for the positive or humorous in situations or tell yourself you will choose to approach them calmly.
○ Communicate with your manager if your workload becomes truly unsustainable so you can work together to find solutions.
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