Any job can cause stress – even if you love what you do! Letting stress build up in the workplace can have a negative impact on your mental health, your job performance and your relationships with your co-workers. Not to mention the roll on effect stress can cause on other areas of your life outside of the workplace.
Whilst you can’t always avoid stress on the job, you can take steps to manage and minimise work related stress.
manage stress at work
In the modern workplace, you can feel a lot of pressure to be online and available. Establish some work/life boundaries that suit you (everyone is different) and clearly communicate these to your co-workers. This might mean no calls after business hours or scheduling appointments during the workday to manage your time.
Identify your stressors.
Be aware of what people, places or situations that cause you stress at work. By being aware of stressors, and how you react to them, you can better avoid or mitigate stressful situations. For 1 week keep a journal of your experiences at work and use these to help identify what is causing you stress and how you could take steps to manage this.
Cultivate healthy habits.
Making healthy choices while you’re at work can help you manage tension and stress. If you work in an office, make sure you get up regularly from your desk, breath fresh air, eat nutritious food. Avoid eating lunch ‘on the job’ and filling up on unhealthy foods containing too much sugar or caffeine. Outside of the workplace, maintain your physical fitness – exercise eat well and rest – fitness can buffer the stress response.
Use your workplace resources.
Many workplaces have incentives that promote staff wellbeing. This might include programs for mental wellbeing or physical moderations that will help you be more comfortable at work. In Australia we have the Employee Assistance Program. EAP is a work-based intervention program designed to identify and assist employees in resolving personal problems emotional problems that may be adversely affecting your performance.
Find out what resources your company or organisation has to support you and use them!
Plan your workload.
It may sound like a simple thing, but making a list will give you a clear idea of what you need to achieve, what you need to prioritise and how your day will play out. Ticking off tasks as you complete them can go a long way towards managing your workload, and help you feel more in control.
Remember to take time to self-care.
Find the things that make you feel good and do them! Talk to a friend, walk on the beach, listen to music or practice deep breathing. Discover what works best for you.
Challenge your unhelpful thoughts.
What is the evidence? What are the positives? Consider your thoughts from a more objective perspective and try and curb negative thinking spirals. More on thought challenging techniques.
Our Mentally Healthy Workshops help employers to collaborate with staff to educate and promote a culture of positive mental wellness in the workplace. We’ve used our 20+ years’ experience in both mental health recovery and employment to develop a strategic workshop, specially designed to support mental wellness in local workplaces. Our workshops are unique to your business, specifically tailored to address the needs of your organisation. Find Out More