Do you find your shoulders creeping up toward your ears as the work day progresses? Or your heart rate increasing? Do you find yourself getting more stressed out at work than usual?
Stress at work is something we all feel from time to time, especially during busier times. But it’s something you can manage!
Here are a few ways to manage stress at work without losing your cool:
Write down what’s setting you off.
Whenever you’re starting to feel angry or stressed, make a note of it, on your phone or a piece of paper, whatever you might have handy. Keep track for a few weeks to see if the same things continue to pop up. Identifying the things that make you feel tense or anxious can help you understand the underlying issues and find ways to address them.
Find ways to address those issues.
If there’s a personnel matter — someone knows how to push your buttons and does it repeatedly — it might be time to get a manager involved to prevent this from becoming a bigger issue. If it’s something else, like you notice yourself getting more stressed out at certain points of the day or with certain tasks, find ways to set yourself up for success and to prepare for those occurrences. Maybe you need to take a little break before the busiest part of the day to clear your head before getting into the heavy work of the day. Maybe, if you’re feeling overwhelmed by a project, you need to walk away for a minute before getting back to it. Walking away from something that stresses you out gives you a moment to reset instead of getting angry.
Avoid the drama.
Sadly, some people really like interpersonal conflict. They like sharing stories that aren’t theirs or passing along gossip. They might want to put you in the middle of a fight they’re having with someone else. Bow out. You don’t need someone else’s stress on top of your own. If you need to walk away to stop the conversation, do it. Make it clear that you aren’t interested in what’s going on between other people; you’re at work to do your job. Do that instead of getting wrapped up in what someone else is dealing with.
Practice time management.
Practice makes perfect! It’s possible you haven’t thought much about time management at work but it really makes a difference. If you find yourself distracted by meetings or emails or taken away from the work at hand by things popping up out of nowhere, try to set yourself a list of daily priorities and use your time to get those things done first and foremost. Give yourself breaks from everything — a walk to get some water or coffee or some fresh air in addition to lunch — to clear your head when you need to, but if you segment your day in such a way that you have certain time set aside for email and you divide up your most important things through the day, you’ll get more done than you realize. All that can help reduce stress!
Set up your workplace.
If you start your morning by getting your workplace set up so that everything you need is in easy reach, you’ll be much happier. Some people need a clean desk to work properly and efficiently; others will need to have safety equipment in certain spots so they can grab and go as needed. Whatever your job is, however you feel most comfortable and however things need to be arranged so you have what you need when you need it without having to go searching, it’ll help make your day run more smoothly.
Take a walk.
When the weather permits, go outside and walk around for lunch. Take even just a few minutes to go outside, get some fresh air and get away from work. If you have more time, eat your lunch outside on a nice day. That clear disconnect from work can help reset your brain — that can help provide a nice calm moment before you go back to the tasks at hand. Being outside is great for you too!
Try to keep things in perspective.
If people are just too much for you, if your blood pressure is rising and your temper is about to flare and it’s all just too much, close your eyes. Take a deep breath. Think about the state of others in the world. Remember that this moment is just *a* moment. It’s not everything. It’s not forever. You will continue your day and your week and your month. This moment will pass. Think of something you’re looking forward to, something outside of work. Think of someone you love. Think about a pet or a friend or your favorite place in the world. Just take a moment to get some perspective and remember: you have a lot to be thankful for and this moment might stink, but it’s just a moment. It will pass.
We all have bad days. We can all have great ones too! Stress management skills help everyone and we can all use a refresher from time to time.
But if you find it’s your job that’s stressing you out and none of the tips mentioned above help, it might be time to consider a change. Contact Debbie’s Staffing! We work with great companies who are looking for candidates just like you — a change of scenery might be the best thing for you. Contact Debbie’s Staffing today and let’s get started.