“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.” ~Steve Jobs
Stress at work is inevitable; it is a natural part of life. Balanced stress however, can help improve our work performance. Too much stress though, can lead to disaster, from physical ailments to emotional breakdown. In this article, we explore simple ways of effectively managing stress at work:
- To start with: learn to prioritize your tasks
It all trickles down to time management. Poor time management can cause a lot of stress; which means there is little time left to accomplish tasks, consequently making it hard to stay calm and focused. This requires you plan ahead so that you can you can alter the mount of stress you are under. Figure out what can be delayed, delegated and focus on what is important. You can also achieve this by creating a to-do list, where you analyze your responsibilities and daily tasks. If you have much in your hands, learn to distinguish between what should be done and what must be done and put those tasks that are not truly necessary at the bottom of the list. Lastly avoid online distractions. Do not let your social networks or your emails distract your attention. When this happens it is difficult to concentrate again and go back to work. Try to check your email at specified intervals and not all the time.
- Secondly you need to take control of your Environment
At times the best way to conquer stress is avoiding the stressors. For instance if someone causes you stress, limit the amount of time you spend with them; if traffic gets you tense, wake up earlier and catch an early taxi. In short find a way round your stressors. On the same breathe; Learn to say “no”. Know your limits and stick to them. Whether in your personal or professional life, learn to refuse added responsibilities. Usually responsibilities that are more than you can handle turns out to be a recipe for stress. Express your feelings instead of bottling them up. If someone is bothering you, communicate your concerns in an open and respectful way. What happens is that if you don’t voice your feelings, resentment will build and the situation will likely remain the same.
- Remember health is wealth, so make healthy choices
Exercise regularly, it helps a ton. Physical activity plays a key role in reducing and preventing the effects of stress. Eat the right kinds of food and drink plenty of water. And obviously, don’t use alcohol or drugs to mask the stress. Well-nourished bodies are better prepared to cope with stress, therefore, a need to be mindful of what you eat. Some healthy choices include, avoiding eating lunch while working, it is recommended you take your lunch breaks. Get a few minutes to get out of the workspace and breathe some fresh air. And at last try and catch at least seven hours of sleep every night.
- Recharge your batteries
Make effective use of your leisure time. For you to be effective at work, you need time to rest. When time for your break comes, take it, get enough sleep, and don’t check work emails outside the work hours (this is easier said than done though). Holidays and breaks do wonders for your emotional health. Find ways of making your breaks worthwhile, you can go for sauna, or get out of town for a weekend and such.
- It doesn’t cost a dime to ask for help
Some common work stressors are hard to handle on your own, including an excessive workload, lack of opportunity for advancement, lack of control over job decisions and work that isn’t challenging. When this happens do not die alone. Talk to someone.
- Look at the Big Picture
Sometimes stress doesn’t come from the hours of time spent at work; it’s what you spend that time on that can wear you down. If you’re working normal hours but are constantly feeling stressed out, it may be that the organization or role you are in isn’t the right fit for you.
Lastly it is good to be aware that you have more control than you think. In fact, the simple realization that you’re in control of your life is the foundation of stress management. Indeed, managing stress is all about taking charge of your thoughts, emotions, priorities, and the way you deal with problems.
Source : Ethiojobs