If You're Stressed at Work, Try A Few of These Ideas
Stress is a common problem in the modern workplace. It can be harmful to employees and, in turn, the entire business. High levels of stress can lead to poor decision-making, a decrease in accuracy, an increase in staff illness/absence and conflict between employees. Whatever the cause of your stress may be, there are many helpful ways to manage it.
Deep Breathing Exercises
Taking a moment to breathe may sound a little too cliché, but it’s a popular technique for a reason. Studies show that deep breathing for even just a minute or two can calm down the areas of the body that are affected by stress. This means that your heart will beat slower, your muscles will relax, and your blood pressure will decrease.
There is a wide variety of exercises you can use, but the key is to stop what you’re doing to focus on nothing but your breathing for a short period of time. You can even find apps for your phone or tablet that will guide you through some patterned breathing techniques.
De-Clutter Your Workspace
Researchers at the Princeton University Neurological Institute found that when there is clutter in your workspace, it makes it harder to focus. When you can’t focus, it’s much easier to fall behind and experience anxiety. However, this can be easy to avoid. Keep your space clear of things you just don’t need to have out.
When you have a little down-time, take the opportunity to clear out clutter. It’s also a great chance to declutter electronically. Organize and delete old emails so you can stay organized. Over-communication in the workplace is linked to anxiety, and having all those emails sit in your inbox can trigger that communicational stress.
Buy a Plant for Your Desk
Flowers and plants happen to be as nice-looking as they are helping in lowering blood pressure. Washington State University released a study involving houseplants and stress. As a group of stressed people went into a plant-filled room, they experienced a significant decrease in blood pressure.
There are so many different types of indoor greenery to choose from. Succulents are a popular option for the workplace because they are low-maintenance and can be left unattended over the weekend. Go buy yourself a plant or two for your desk. It will help you feel calmer when overwhelmed. It will also help purify the air around you, which will be helpful when you’re working on those deep breathing exercises.
Seek Additional Training
We all have strengths, but our job tasks will not always require our strengths only. There will be many times where we will have to step outside our comfort zone to do tasks. Some of these tasks will become easier as time others may continue to be a struggle. Struggling at a particular task for a while can cause additional stress on you at work. If this is the case, seek additional training to help give you the skills needed. For example, if you have been asked to increase sales, seeking some sales training might help you accomplish that and alleviate some of the stress along the way.
Munch on Healthy Snacks
When you’re hungry, it can actually add on to any stress you already have. The gut is the largest organ involved in the immune system. So be sure to keep yourself fed! It’s even more beneficial to take a quick break away from your desk to feed your body. That way you can take the time to focus on nothing but the taste and sensations in the moment, which helps relieve stress.
Try to stick to healthier snacks that don’t require so much work for your body to process. For example, a handful of nuts, an avocado, a hard-boiled egg, or a banana are all quick and healthy options to help you stay productive and stress-free.
Communication amongst co-workers and managers is one of the most important tools for success in the workplace. When your organization is communicating effectively, there will be less stress and more active engagement. This was found in a study from Gallup in 2009. In the study, over a thousand employees were surveyed on the impact of managerial feedback. They found that the manager’s feedback had a dramatic impact on how actively engaged their employees were able to be.
This means that by employees receiving constructive feedback on their performance, there is a far better chance of them staying productive and engaged in their work. As a manager, you should look into ways to provide quality feedback. Employee recognition programs may be one of the best options for managers and employees alike. The Gallup study found that positive feedback is most effective in boosting productivity and decreasing the amount of stress.
Listen to Calming Music
Music has been scientifically proven to relieve stress. Listening to music you enjoy releases dopamine, which is a key ingredient to a happy and calm mood. This can help lower your stress levels. Listening to music can also help some individuals focus better. However, music can also be distracting for others. So be sure to bring headphones with you for those times when you start to feel overwhelmed.The type of music you listen to is completely up to you. Studies have shown that classical music has the most calming and soothing effect on the brain, but any genre will help you relax as long as you enjoy the sound.