By DPR Group
Stress… we all suffer from it at one time or another, whether you have a hard deadline coming up for a big project at work or stress from responsibilities at home. From an early age, we are trained as students to become multitaskers. Oftentimes, we bite off a little more than we can chew and that can lead to stress. The question is: how do we manage it? Better yet, what are the steps we can take during the day to help decrease our stress level and maintain a healthy lifestyle?
“69% of employees report that work is a significant source of stress and 41% say they typically feel tense or stressed out during the workday.”
-American Psychological Association
Here are five simple steps you can take to decrease your stress at work:
- Breathe: Oftentimes, we forget to breathe or alter the way we breathe when we are stressed. Some consider breathing to be the most important of all the bodily functions because all other functions depend upon it, including the ability to complete tasks. If you are feeling stressed, first focus on your breathing and try to take deeper, fuller breaths. This will help lower your heart rate and ultimately reduce your stress level. Consider practices such as meditation and yoga.
- Take a Walk: Theatre has been a hobby of mine since I was a little girl. During “tech week” (the week before the opening of the show) my director would “take a lap” when she needed a break from what was going on during a production. Just like theatre, in day-to-day work many elements have to fall into place to result in a successful project and this can be very stressful. Next time you feel a little frenzied, take a quick walk by yourself to clear your head.
- Exercise: Any form of exercise can act as a stress reliever. Being active can boost your feel-good endorphins and distract you from daily stresses. I personally go to the gym when I need to clear my head. It’s rejuvenating and can also be a time for creative problem solving. So go run a mile!
- Talk: Sometimes the best problem solving can come from talking out loud. The idea that two heads are better than one. If you have a dilemma on a project that’s stressing you out, try speaking with a colleague. You might be surprised what you can solve on your own just by talking to someone out loud.
- Reduce: One big cause of stress is having too much on your plate. Try reordering some activities that are time consuming or not as important to focus on your priorities. Eliminate!
These are simple, easy to follow tips for typical work-related stress. However, if you’re experiencing severe stress resulting in serious physical ailments or depression, you may want to seek medical help from a certified professional.