We all experience stress. It's part of life, especially at work. Even if you love your job, you probably have it. In fact, only 3% of people recently surveyed reported that work did not cause them any stress. Think about it—just having to get there on time, get along with others, meet deadlines, and deal with clients can be stressful. Here are five quick and easy things you can do to combat that stress.
- Organizing. Yes, the saying goes that a clean desk is the sign of a sick mind. But actually, a cluttered desk leads to a cluttered mind, which can distract you or make you feel frazzled. If you organize your workspace, it will force you to slow down and focus. This will slow your heart rate and reduce your stress level. Even just filing papers can help calm your mind, and the act of accomplishing something will boost your mood.
- Dancing? Singing? Whistling? If you whistle while you work, you'll probably annoy your coworkers, but listening to music at your desk will help you tune out a lot of stress-inducing stimuli. If you can do so without disturbing those around you, humming along or even mouthing the lyrics to your favorite songs can help keep you calm.
- Snacking right. While healthy snack options are great, sometimes you might need to taste a little something sweet—accent on little— on your tongue to help release your body's natural feel-good endorphins. Try a small amount of dark chocolate, for example. It contains antioxidants and flavonoids that will positively affect your mood.
- Taking a break. You need to step away from your desk or computer regularly throughout the day to give both your mind and your body the opportunity to recharge and refresh. Take a five-minute water or coffee break, interact with coworkers face-to-face, step outside for a breath or two of fresh air, or take advantage of your lunch break to get away.
- Just say no. Learning to say no and not to take on everything that comes your way is essential in managing stress. Sure the overachiever in all of us wants to do everything well. But we can’t do our best when we are stressed out. P
Recognizing feelings of stress during the workday and taking steps to reduce them are essential to maintaining good health and achieving an effective work-life balance. Do you have any other suggestions for how to "bust" work-related stress? If so, please share them below.