Your work might not define you, but it probably takes up a lot of your time. It may even intrude into your personal time, too. Some folks take home work that needs to get done while others carry around the stress from the previous day and nerves or even dread looking toward the next one.
Holding onto a positive attitude can be difficult when you are involved in a stressful work environment. The alternative is to let the stress affect your overall health, your work performance and even your home life. Thankfully, mental health experts say that there are ways that you can reduce the amount of stress that you feel at work while developing strategies to better deal with it.
- Practice Mindfulness
Mindfulness is about setting things in balance and not being overwhelmed by the things that life, and work, throw at you. If you spent yesterday hitting a brick wall, for instance, with your sales prospecting schemes, know that tomorrow might look very different.
Practicing mindfulness is a way to be calmly aware of one’s thoughts and feelings – no matter the emotional pitch – in the present moment. It’s not designed to be a stressbuster, necessarily, but rather to maintain the ability to remain at an even keel, despite the pressures that are on you in a given moment. Here are some popular mindfulness techniques:
- Mindful breathing
- Body scan
- Develop a Routine
From getting out of the house fully prepared for the day to leaving your desk at the end of it, a steady routine can work in your favor. Whether it’s going for a jog or enjoying a big breakfast or both, getting into a morning routine can set your mood for the day. It can also help to acknowledge the mood cycles that people tend to go through. Some mornings will be hard and some will be easy, but your routine remains static, thus preparing you for the day to come.
Another benefit of developing a routine is when surprises pop up at work. While these could make you stressed and frazzled, if you can visualize your standard work routine for the day, you’ll be better able to calmly place the surprise amidst your other duties, or recognize that it isn’t possible. Either way, you’ll be better equipped to deal with it.
- Embrace Healthy Living
Health is vital to happiness. Eating foods that give you energy without weighing you down, staying hydrated and exercising several times a week is the way to prepare your body and mind for anything, even work. To this point, make sure to eat a healthy breakfast before going out the door and pack or have a lunch plan that involves healthy choices to give you an energy boost for the afternoon.
- Advocate for Yourself
When you’re experiencing stress, it’s important to speak up. You have a role and it’s up to your employer to facilitate the ideal conditions for you to act in that role. If things are stressing you out, speak your mind.
- Maintain a Balance
Sometimes, work threatens to take over everything. It’s really up to you to not allow this to happen. Whether you’re internally motivated to excel or you’re feeling external stresses to keep going, it’s vital for your energy and sanity to establish a sharp line of demarcation between work and the other aspects of your life.
Some keys to establishing a balance include eschewing your email after a certain point of day, investing your time and energy in your family, friends and hobbies while you aren’t on the proverbial clock. After all, the work will always be waiting for you.
Work scenarios can be stressful for loads of reasons. Rising above it is difficult but worth the effort. By investing in self-care, you’ll be giving the best of yourself to your employer.