No matter what type of work you do or how much you love or dislike it at times, stress comes with the job. Teachers. Medical professionals. Restaurant staff. Law enforcement workers. Customer service reps. Wearers of hard hats or three piece suits. We all know the tension that can come from common job and workplace stress, like:
- Demanding workloads
- Money worries
- Company culture
- Unclear or conflicting job expectations
- Organizational changes
- Balancing work and home life
And because stress doesn’t simply stop when your workday is done, it’s important to manage it well to safeguard your wellbeing. Feeling burdened can affect the choices you make. It might lead you to lose your temper easily, overeat, skip your exercise routine, smoke or misuse drugs and alcohol. Over time, constant pressure and poor habits can wear on you physically and emotionally, leading to or worsening health problems from headaches and trouble sleeping or concentrating to high blood pressure and lowered immunity.
Control the things you can
Some work-related stress can be lightened or go away with the right approach.
- Keep up good habits. Hard as it may be, try to be aware of what and how much you’re eating during stressful times the same goes for your exercise routine and how much alcohol you may consume.
- Distract yourself from stress. Do things that help you purposely slow down, find some quiet space, and center your spirit. Take five or 10 minutes to sit quietly and breathe. Eat a meal slowly. Walk for 15 minutes on a break.
- Use your resources. Tap into Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) or other free counseling support that your employer may offer.
- Lean on others. Trusted friends and family members can help you disconnect from work and enjoy a “recovery” and recharging period.
- Talk it out. Speak with your supervisor about job stressors that are currently affecting your ability to be as productive as you can be. Together, work out a plan that may lessen or remove issues in your way. Suggest ways to use or improve your best skills, trade less challenging tasks for more meaningful ones, or get more support from your coworkers to fulfill tasks.