People often describe “Stress” as “deadlines,” “traffic,” “being overwhelmed”, “over-commitment,” “not enough time ”and even “having to deal with imprudent people.” This suggests that many believe stress is something that happens to us, but in reality, stress is merely our response to all those external factors. Is there a way to maintain steady focus throughout the day? Is it possible to do everything that needs to get done and still have energy left over after work? How do you keep cool under so many demands? The following steps will help us to manage stress at work:
- Regular Exercise: Physical activity helps to release stress-relieving chemicals. Every time you find your stress level on the rise, get up and move. You can stretch, run in place, dance, or walk around the office or building. Doing so gets your blood and endorphin flowing makes you happy.
- Learn to say “no”: Being overbooked, overworked, and over-committed will lead to stress. We often feel obligated to say “yes” to everything for fear we won’t be liked. But the greatest act of stress relief is being able to say “no” in a polite way and negotiating when there are lots of workloads and tight deadlines.
- Act Rather Than React: You are in control of your actions and responses. However, we often experience stress when we feel situations are out of our control. This activates the stress hormone and wears down our confidence, concentration and well-being. It is good to identify aspects of the situation you can control and let go of the rest.
- Take A Deep Breath: If you’re coming out of a tense meeting and need to clear your head, a few minutes of deep breathing will restore balance. Simply inhale for five seconds, hold and exhale in equal counts through the nose. “It’s like getting the calm and focus of a 90-minute yoga class in three minutes or less at your desk”.
- Eliminate Interruptions: “Most of us are bombarded during the day”. Emails, phone calls, pop ins, instant messages and sudden, urgent deadlines which all make us more distracted than ever. While you may not have control over the interrupters, you can control your response. Respond in one of three ways: Accept the interruption, cut it off, or diagnosis its importance and make a plan.
- Eat Right and Sleep Well: “Eating badly will stress your system,” Its advised to eat a low-sugar, high-protein diet, whole foods, green vegetables, fruits and getting a healthy dose of omega-3 fatty acids from salmon and avoid processed food which causes anxiety. “And when you’re not sleeping well, you’re not getting the rejuvenating effects.” Aim for eight hours of sleep each night. Sleeping well is a critical recovery period for the body, which can help you solve problems with a clearer mind and even boost your intelligence.
- Identify Self-Imposed Stress: “Learn to stop self-imposing stress by building your own self-confidence rather than seeking other’s approval”. If you’re too caught up in others’ perceptions of you, which you can’t control, you become stressed out. Ironically, once you shift your focus from others’ perception of your work to the work itself, you’re more likely to impress them.
- Prioritize Your Priorities: With competing deadlines and fast-changing priorities, it’s critical to be clear and define what’s truly important. Understand your roles, the company’s strategic priorities, and your personal goals and strengths. Discard your to-do list by focusing on those projects that will have the most impact and are best aligned with your goals.