Handling workplace stress

Handling workplace stress

The deadline is looming, the client is always on the phone, the workload is mounting and that vein in your forehead is pulsating overtime.

Unless you’re a yogi, stress at work is a fact of life. But what are the best ways of ensuring stress doesn’t get out of control?

Experts agree that some degree of stress is healthy and can actually help your performance – for example, being nervous before delivering a new business pitch.

However, experiencing unrelieved stress over a period of time isn’t good news. Typical symptoms include sleeplessness, irritability and loss of concentration, appetite and sex drive.

So how do you handle stress? First identify the source of your stress – is it due to workload, poor relationships at work or fear of redundancy? Think about how these pressures could be alleviated, then approach your boss with constructive solutions to the problems.

During the day, check your posture for signs of stress such as hunched shoulders. Make an effort to relax physically – for example, by taking deep breaths. Where possible take a break from your work and walk around the block.

Make sure you leave the office on time at least once a week. Build time in your schedule for exercise and for activities such as drinks with friends. If the causes of your stress lie outside work, make sure your boss is aware of them and if possible take time off to try to sort them out.

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