Prayer For Stress At Work
Business Problems Prayer That Helps You Relieve Work Stress
According to the American Institute of Stress, there are more than 70% of people regularly experiencing physical and psychological symptoms of stress.
To reduce these symptoms and help you cope up with stress, various pharmaceutical companies and meditation gurus propose different solutions.
But do you know that there is such a thing as business problems prayer to reduce stress? Well, there is, and it’s quite remarkable as well.
What Happens When You’re Under Stress
There are different triggers of stress. According to surveys, job pressure tops the list. This is then followed by money problems.
When you face stressors such as these, your body experiences hormonal, cardiovascular, respiratory, and nervous system changes. Your heart will beat faster; you’ll start sweating, and breathing becomes rapid.
Chemical changes in the body happen because it thinks it’s under attack.The best way to reduce stress is to remove the stressors. However, that is not always plausible. Thus, people try to find alternatives.
According to the National Health Service, some of the ways you can address stress are to (1) connect with a good support network; (2) take some time to relax by yourself; (3) be positive; and (4) accept things that you can’t change. All of these can be witnessed through various business problems prayer benefits.
Business Problems Prayer Benefits: How a Prayer Can Help Relieve Stress
In a book published by Dr. Roberta Lee, she says that people who are more in touch with their spirituality can cope with life better. They heal faster and can cope with stress more easily. In other words, when you say a prayer for peace of mind and guidance, you’ll be able to see improvements in your health and wellbeing.
This notion by Dr. Roberta Lee is supported by several studies including that done with the National Institute for Health Care Research or NIHR.
In their study, it was found that college students who were in contact with the campus ministry visited doctors less often than those who don’t. Moreover, they were also under less stress during the most difficult times in school.
Students who had strong religious beliefs also had more positive emotions and lower levels of depression.
You might wonder exactly how does learning how to pray makes a person better in handling stress. You will understand the answer to this question once you know the different benefits of prayer and religion.
A feeling of interconnectedness can allow you to release control. Most of the time, the feeling of responsibility is too heavy of a burden– something that you can’t carry alone.
However, once you share this burden with other people, the lesser the burden will feel. You’ll realize that you don’t have to be accountable for everything.This will give you great relief, especially if you have a job or business that gives you high pressure.
Feeling interconnected with a higher being and people who believe in that same being can expand your social network. In other words, faith can be the building block for relationships.
This kind of relationship is often characterized as supportive and close. After all, faith brings people together by giving them a common goal– to adhere to all tenets of a religion.
As you build stronger relationships with people of the same religion, the more your faith strengthens and vice versa.
When you say a prayer for anxiety relief, you tap into a great source of comfort and relief because it gives you the feeling that you will not bear the burden alone. People who feel they don’t have anyone to talk to or rely on usually ends up lonelier and more stressed.
Many self-help experts usually advise people not to sweat the small things. But the problem is: What is considered small and unimportant? It seems highly subjective. What one person finds valuable may not be as important for another.
Spirituality encourages you to look within yourself and make an inventory of things that you consider valuable. It through prayers that you can discover what’s the most important to you.
For instance, if you always find yourself using many business problems prayer benefits, then your company might be one of the most valuable things that you have. Recognizing what matters to you will help you focus your energy and attention on issues that surround them.Prayer leads to action, which, in turn, leads to the solution of the problem and the elimination of the stressor.
Putting your trust in a Higher Being is one way that you can practice optimism. In a study conducted by Ai AL, et.al., it was found that private prayer fostered optimism, often resulting in better health.
How is this possible? When you trust on a Higher Being, you feel all outcomes are possible. This gives you hope and strengthens your positive outlook in life.
As a result, you will feel less stress and enjoy better emotional health.
Prayers for stress and strength acknowledge and reinforce your belief on the benevolence of a Higher Being. With this, you gain positive outcomes from your prayers. Additionally, you are more and more ly to resort to praying during challenging times. This promotes a positive cycle of asking for help via prayer and expressing gratitude through prayer.
When experts say that a prayer for stress and anxiety can lead to improved health, they mean to include tangible mental and physical results.
When you expand your social network through shared faith, you have more opportunities to take part in activities that will improve your physical health.
After all, it’s easier to be active when you’re with a partner or a group. Having the same support system can also give you an outlet to vent out your frustrations.
Thus, you’ll be able to deal with hardships and the stress that goes with them.
It is ironic to see that science confirming that religion comes with benefits. However, several studies have already proven it.
If you are facing tough times and you need a way to relieve your stress, you might want to consider learning a few business problems prayer benefits. Business problems prayer benefits might not directly solve business problems.
However, business problems benefits can give you the support that you need in order to act towards solving them.
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10 Stress-Busting Secrets of Great Teachers
If I look through a window pane and see teaching as weather, teaching would be the thunderstorm. And as we sail our classroom ship on this maelstrom of hormones, stress, conflicting priorities, and distractions, it takes rock-solid habits of mind and life to be the kind of self-assured captain who can weather the storm.
“I feel thin, sort of stretched, butter scraped over too much bread.”
JRR Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring
Health professionals believe that 80-90% of all disease is stress related. Gallup’s 2014 State of American Schools reports half of teachers claim they have significant daily stress. (The highest of all careers polled.)
This month’s Global Search on Education question is “What are the quick ways to combat teacher’s stress in a classroom? ” You’ll see all of the answers collected here.
Here are some time-tested research-proven ways to be that Teacher-Captain with nerves of steel.
Teacher Stress Busting Secret #1: Kill Worry By Accepting the Worst and Working to Improve It
“Worry is a cycle of inefficient thoughts whirling around a center of fear.” Corrie ten Boom
Many teachers house an internal storm between their ears. Worry rips through peace and electrocutes purpose.
The best technique for dealing with anxiety comes from Dale Carnegie’s How to Stop Worrying and Start Living. Carnegie interviewed Willis H.
Carrier the engineer and founder of the Carrier Corporation, the company many of us use for our air conditioning system. Early in his career, Carrier had made a mistake and installed a massive air handling system that didn’t work.
After nights of not sleeping, Carrier adopted three steps that changed his life.
- Analyze the situation fearlessly and honestly and figure out the worst that can happen as a result.
- Accept the worst outcome
- Calmly devote time and energy to improve upon the worst which has already been accepted mentally.
When I’m worried, I grab pen and paper and start by listing the worst thing that can happen. I go ahead and accept the worst, and then, I start improving it. As it says in Luke 12:22,
“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?”
Teacher Stress Busting Secret #2: Interrupt Negative Thought Loops and Replace Them With Positive Ones
Your thoughts can swirl into a tornado — taking you to places of purpose or pathetic places of self-induced agony.
Your thoughts create a mental momentum that spills over into your physical world.
On a recent episode of Every Classroom Matters, Sir John Hargrave, author of Mindhacking, talked about “thought loops.” Thought loops are those repeated loops of things we say to ourselves. Part of self-awareness and metacognition is the ability to pull back and observe your thoughts from a distance.
For example, early in my career I was struggling with classroom management. I found myself thinking “I can’t manage my classroom.” The more I said this, the more helpless I became. I quickly switched this stinkin’ thinkin’ to “I will learn how to better manage my classroom and become a better teacher.” I did.
Gandhi said,“I will not let anyone walk through my mind with his dirty feet.”
Sometimes we’re the one with dirty feet and the negativity comes from ourselves. Sometimes our thoughts echo negative things people have said to us that we won’t let go. We can master our thoughts and redirect our abilities. Interrupt your negative thoughts and replace them with positive ones. Even if you have to talk to yourself. Redirect your thoughts and regain your mind.
Teacher Stress Busting Secret #3: Keep a Joy Journal
Looking for joy is looking for a color. When you look for the color blue, you see it everywhere. Start noticing and writing down things that bring you joy. You’ll re-set your mindset and become happier.
Research has shown that keeping a joy journal will improve your “long term well being” more than winning a million dollars in the lottery.
Most of us are naturally tuned to notice certain things. Some people always see the negative, old Eeyore in Winnie the Pooh.
Winnie the Pooh: Lovely day, isn’t it?
Eeyore: Wish I could say yes, but I can’t.
Some of us just need to re-set our mindset. Listing five things a day will have you looking for those things. The kind word, the fun time you had playing with the dog, the romantic dinner you had last night, the surprise phone call from an old friend. We all have moments of joy if we start noticing them instead of feeling blue.
Teacher Stress Busting Secret #4: Make Sleep a Priority
A tired teacher is a powderkeg looking for a match. Set an evening alarm to remind yourself that it is time to go to sleep. Sleep loss makes it harder to think, harms your health and worsens your mood. Women who sleep less than seven hours a night are more ly to be obese. Norbert Schwarz says,
“Making $60,000 more in annual income has less of an effect on your daily happiness than getting one extra hour of sleep a night.”
Brooks and Lack found that a ten-minute nap was ideal, but that even a five-minute snooze was better than nothing.
Teacher Stress Busting Secret #5: Drink Enough Water
Take time to drink water. Seventy-five percent of Americans suffer from chronic dehydration. Dehydration is shown to impact your mood and cognitive processes negatively. The effects of dehydration are real and especially detrimental to teachers who must stay positive and think clearly.
Many suffer not from lack of water, but an inability to take time to drink it. Apply the “mud puddle principle” and put a glass by each sink in your home. Drink a whole glass of water at the beginning of break and lunch. Drinking water must become part of your habits, so you do it automatically.
Teacher Stress Busting Secret #6: Exercise (preferably outside)
Sitting is the new cigarette. Every 90 minutes a human needs to move. We’re not stuck on a ship, after all, we can walk around the building or visit a friend across campus. Some of us can even walk to work.
Just five minutes of exercise gives you a positive mood-enhancing impact. Exercising outdoors will boost your mood even more.
Teacher Stress Busting Secret #7: Make Time for Faith
“If patience is worth anything, it must endure to the end of time. And a living faith will last in the midst of the blackest storm.” Mahatma Gandhi
A strong correlation exists between religion and positive mental health. Research-proven ways of handling stress include meditation, deep breathing, aromatherapy, listening to music, visualization and prayer.
Mother Teresa worked in the harshest of situations with the poor in Calcutta. If there has ever been a person sailing a ship on the red blood of despair, death, and poverty, it is this precious woman. She said,
“The simplicity of our life of contemplation makes us see the face of God in everything, everyone, and everywhere, all the time.”
Teacher Stress Busting Secret #8: Develop deep relationships
As humans, we need intimacy. But just being together is not enough. Be careful that your stressful career doesn’t ruin your close relationships. While journaling your problems is shown to reduce stress, just talking about them with another person is not. And cynical gossip has an intensely negative impact on your life.
Build healthy relationships of mutual respect and common interests. Do fun things together. Take time off from work-worries and just be a human being, not a human doing.
Teacher Stress Busting Secret #9: Make Physical Affection Part of Your Day
“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” Leo Buscaglia, Author
Kissing, hugging, and even massages are proven ways to reduce stress. Even a simple, appropriate hug or pat on the back can help.
Teacher Stress Busting Secret #10: Unplug, Recharge, and Focus
A distracted captain can run his ship aground. A distracted person is a danger to himself and those he cares for most.
Constant interruptions can make you feel a human doing and not a human being.
Unplug. First, we need at least an hour before bed when we are not looking at or around our brightly lit devices. Technology devices wake us up an interrupt our circadian rhythms, making it difficult to sleep. Stop using technology one hour before bedtime.
Recharge. Charge your phone outside of the bedroom. Even in airplane mode and do not disturb, some apps can wake us up.
Have a Do Not Disturb Time. You need uninterrupted moments of DND (Do Not Disturb) time. Any time you’re at an event and want to focus on the event, set your phone to DND, particularly if using your phone as the camera.
This way, you won’t be interrupted with an “urgent” email when you go to snap a picture of a never-to-be-repeated moment. You will also be more productive at work.
Teachers who mess around with computer instead of focusing on students, make a mess of great teaching opportunities.
Teaching: An Epic Quest for Excellence
It would be nice to calm the storm and sail quiet seas all the time. But some of the most hated weather by sailors is dead calm. You have nothing to propel you forward — no wind. When you teach, you have to accept the weather we navigate. What you do not have to accept is that you have to stress out about it and have no quality of life.
For, when I read Walt Whitman’s words, I always think of a teacher.
Oh Captain! my Captain! our fearful trip is done,
The ship has weather’d every rack, the prize we sought is won,
Here’s to you, teacher. May you weather the storm and laugh in the rain. This profession may be stressful but is is never boring. Our destination is purposeful. We captain a great ship on an epic quest to educate the minds of men and women. We sail towards tomorrow.
4 Types Of Stress At Work And How To Deal With Them
“More smiling, less worrying. More compassion, less judgment. More blessed, less stressed. More love, less hate.” ― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart
Work is meaningful and essential. Work is a part of life. It’s utilizing our talents in order to get something in return. It is a give-and-take process that benefits both parties for the betterment of society.
Through work, you get to feed yourself and your family, pay the bills and get to buy your wants and needs. It is a comfort to the people who have it because it is the answer to their needs.
Unfortunately, not all jobs fit everyone. Some are unfortunate to land a job they dis while others simply fall love from their jobs. This makes it harder for them to work efficiently.
The Common Factor That Makes People Hate Their Jobs
There are a lot of factors that make people hate their jobs.
For some people, it’s the imbalance in their work and personal life. For others, it’s the overwhelming workload and the toxic people they need to work with. The list can get long but one thing is present in all these factors- stress.
Stress is the body’s natural response to pressure or danger around you. It produces hormones, adrenaline and cortisol, that activates the ‘flight-or-fight’ response of your body. Every day, we encounter stress. However, too much stress can have negative effects on your health.
Here are the common types of stress at work and how to manage them.
This is the most common type of stress at work. You usually experience this when you think there’s not enough time for you to finish a task. Panic sets in and you struggle to finish as many things as you can. You rush until you get burned out, do all of them half-way or, worse, not get any work done at all.
When facing time stress, it is important to manage your time and get your priorities straight. Filter your tasks so you can easily see which ones you need to do first. You can use the Eisenhower matrix for this.
Do First. Tasks in this category should be your first priority. Anything that is placed here should be done as soon as you’re able and not later than the day after tomorrow.
Schedule. This could be important tasks but are not so urgent. These kinds of tasks are either important scheduled meetings or an article with a set deadline.
Delegate. Tasks in this section are not important but still urgent. It could be a follow-up call to a client or a request for your presence for a presentation. These can be transferable to people you can trust, though.
Don’t do. Tasks in this category are neither important nor urgent. You can either do it when you have nothing else to do or not do it at all.
You can use this method if you prioritizing things the traditional way. However, with today’s technology, you can use apps Evernote and Toggl to boost your productivity and manage your ideas and time easily.
This stress is associated with the feeling of anticipating the future a little too much. You anticipate so much that uncertainties of what could happen in the future overwhelm you.
Here’s How To Deal With Anticipatory Stress
Be Positive. The best way to deal with anticipatory stress is to not let fear get the best of you. Positive visualization of outcomes helps by cutting off the negative stream of thinking. Meditation and calming yourself down can also help you from stressing yourself out.
Be Prepared. Face the unknown and tackle it head on by visualizing both the best and worst case scenario. If you think that something is going to go bad in the near future, be prepared and formulate back-up plans that you can use.
Be Brave. Anticipatory stress is mostly caused by the thought of failure. In order to combat failure, prepare yourself by visualizing possible obstacles in your path. Take those obstacles as challenges and see failure as a chance to learn and grow.
Situational stress happens when everything starts to go your control. It appears suddenly and you will have no clue on what to do. It is the time when you think that everything is going smoothly but suddenly, in a blink of an eye, everything goes downhill.
It could be a time when conflict suddenly erupted near you and you are caught in the middle of it. Or it could be the time where your boss suddenly mocked you in front of many co-workers.
Everyone reacts to situational stress differently. You can act out your behavior or on how your automatic response work in specific situations. In a sudden eruption of conflict, you either join the conflict or back away.
Be Self-Aware. The most important point is to be self-aware in whatever you will be doing. Being aware of yourself, your actions and with everything around you, will help you think of a solution despite the stress you are under.
Be Calm. Keep hold of your cool and use your head instead of your temper or emotions. Keeping calm lets you assess the situation before doing something that can negatively affect you, your reputation or your job.
Be Patient. Be patient by hearing each side of the conflict before deciding how to solve it. Meet them halfway in order to come up with a peaceful end to it. If you are dealing with situational stress with your boss, hear him out before reacting.
This stress involves the feeling of being overwhelmed by meeting new or too many people. All of us can be overwhelmed by a lot of people, whether we are introverts or extroverts.
It might be because you don’t them or they don’t you, but you have to interact with them. It might also mean that it’s the first time you’ll meet them and you worry about how they will react or how they will perceive you.
Handling Your Encounter Stress
Practice People Skills. In order to be able to manage a lot of people well, practice or even perfect your people skills. Be confident with interacting with them, so that you can take control of the situation. You’ll be calmer knowing that you can handle any problem that can arise.
Be Emphatic. Empathy is understanding another person from their point of view. Putting yourself in someone else’s shoes will make you understand them deeper and feel what they are feeling without judging them. It’ll avoid possible conflict and strengthen relationship bonds at the same time.
Breathe. Whenever stressed, it is important to breathe. Deep breathing has the ability to reduce stress in the body. This signals the brain to calm down and the brain sends the message all over the body.
Write. Studies show that writing about your feelings or anything that makes you happy reduces stress. Take time, relax and write anything you can think of.
See Also: Writing Therapy: How It Can Make Your Life Easier
It is very important for you to be able to take care of your well-being in order to continue doing what you love and sharing what you can do to everyone. Equipping yourself with a healthy body, engaging mind and a positive attitude will make you go a long, long way.
See Also: 4 Ways To Reduce Stress Inside and Outside of Work
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Here’s How To Get Rid Of Stress At Work
You need to learn to relax. Stress at work costs companies money, but even more importantly does a lot of physical and mental damage to your body.
The truth is, managing stress at work is getting even harder these days, because of how fast technology is advancing.
The fact that every time a new email comes in we’re notified in multiple places, makes us that more attached to our work.
Some people call for a work-life balance, or work-life integration, but I can’t stress how important it is to disconnect, and come back the next day feeling fresh. I hate to your burst your bubble, but whatever you’re working on, as important as you might think it is, it’s not.
Companies need to stop demanding so much from their employees. I’ve seen a lot of managers try and suck every last bit of productivity a person, but it’s not smart.
After a certain point, you stop being productive. I’ve been saying for years, I’d rather see someone work 4 solid hours, than an 8 hour day filled with mistakes.
First, let’s look at some of the damage that stress does to you, and then let’s find out how to get rid of stress at work permanently.
Why Stress At Work Is Such a Big Problem
A Work Stress survey shows that 83% of Americans are stressed out by at least one thing about their jobs. Poor pay and increasing workloads were top sources of concern reported by American workers.
It’s also important not to repress these feelings and deal with them as they come up. This has a very serious effect on your health.
In a study of 120 managers and engineers at an aerospace company, researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine found that the repressors had higher blood pressure and reacted with an even greater rise in blood pressure to a simple stress test than did non-repressors.Job stress is also a problem for employers, costing U.S. businesses an estimated $300 billion per year through absenteeism, lowered productivity, employee turnover and direct medical, legal and insurance fees.
Research was done that found that chronic stress is the equivalent of smoking 5 cigarettes a day. The research showed that the people who were stressed were 27% more ly to have a heart attack.
A study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation found a link between stress and cancer. The researchers tested an anti-cancer drug on 2 groups of mice. The group that was more stressed was able to kill less of the cancer than the non-stressed out mice.
Ways To Reduce Stress At Work
Overall, you want to live a clean lifestyle, and find different ways to make you happy, since that will help you feel better about life, and reduce your stress.
1. Live A Healthy Lifestyle
Not only will this help lower stress, but it will improve your overall well-being, and affect your moods throughout the day.
Exercising will make you happier by releasing endorphins, and you’ll be less ly to become so stressed if you’re generally in a better mood.
Eating properly will also help to make you feel less sluggish, and more alert, helping you manage your energy better and not become so stressed.
2. Manage Your Energy
It’s important to be able to listen to your body, and to understand when you need a break, even if you’ve got a big deadline coming up. That pressure will inevitably lead to stress, and that’s no good.
If you’re putting in too much work, and not taking enough rest, it will lead to employee burnout, which might actually cause you more stress, because you’ll be restless and unable to work, not to mention the psychological damage burnout does to you.
I read somewhere not long ago that the average business professional has 30 to 100 projects that they have to manage.
We all take on way too much work for ourselves, and it’s unmanageable. We need to learn how to say no.
There’s no way that you’ll be able to properly complete all of these projects, so prioritize.
Decide what is going to bring you the most value for your time spent, and then honestly, just eliminate the rest.
4. Take Time For Yourself
When looking into the importance of downtime, and how downtime affects our productivity, I discovered that the most important thing about taking time for yourself is how you use that time.
For example, workers that reported negative thoughts (thinking negatively about your job) returned to work even more stressed out then when they left.
Don’t be afraid to take time to recharge, and understand that alone time where you really unplug is good for your mental health, and will help you avoid stress at work.
How Do You Manage Stress At Work?
The main takeaway is that you need to learn to disconnect, and just relax. There’s no need for you to get overly stressed about things that are mostly your control. What do you do to manage stress? Let me know your thoughts on @JacobShriar or @Officevibe.
Stress at Work: a simple guide
It's vital that employers are tuned in to how their employees are feeling. The symptoms of stress can appear in a number of ways, but here are some typical signs.
Emotional Your employee may seem sensitive to criticism, be irritable, have an uncharacteristic loss of confidence or self-esteem, and be less engaged.
Cognitive You may notice that your employee is making more mistakes than usual, is having problems making decisions, or is not able to concentrate.
Behavioural This could include things arriving late, not taking lunch breaks, taking unofficial time off, not joining in with the team or office banter, or not hitting deadlines.
Physical Employees who are stressed sometime exhibit physical symptoms such as what seems a constant cold, being tired at work, looking they haven't made an effort with their appearance, or rapid weight loss or gain.
Coping with stress at work
Identifying a stressed employee is one thing, but helping them to cope with stress is quite another as they have no obligation to discuss their personal problems with managers. And with manager style and behaviour often cited as a major cause of workplace stress, managers clearly have a massive – and potentially tricky – role to play.
Acknowledging the problem exists is the first step. Understandably, many employers are worried about broaching the subject, being wrong or causing offence. And if the manager's actually the problem, a neutral third party is needed. A company's HR department typically provides an informal and independent sounding board.
Either the line manager or HR professional should ask the employee for a quiet word somewhere private and then let them know that they've noticed they've not been themselves and ask if they'd to talk about it.If they are willing, a meeting with HR could then be set up. The meeting should be confidential, non-threatening, open and provide an opportunity for the employee, the line manager and the HR professional to discuss and identify what support the business can offer to better help the employee to cope.
In an ideal world, this scenario wouldn't happen, but with increasingly busy lives it's a situation that employers are more and more ly to see. The good news is that there are things you can do to help reduce the incidence of stress-related problems arising in the workplace:
Effective communication channels between the workforce and managers go a long way to ensure people feel they have someone to talk to if their workload is spiralling control or they have other worries.
Ways of setting up good communication could include staff surveys, giving workers the opportunity to anonymously voice concerns about their jobs and even make suggestions as to how they would to see management cut down on stress.
When it comes to how you deal with stress in the workplace, it probably goes without saying that a long-term strategy is preferable. That said, there are a number of shorter-term tactics that you can implement that can go a long way in helping you to tackle workplace stress, including:
- offering stress-management workshops which all staff are invited to and which focus on coping with stress at work. This will help ensure your affected employee doesn't feel they are being singled out
- keeping an eye on staff holiday – if certain employees aren't using their full quota, gently remind them that they still have plenty of days left to take
- ensuring people can relax while on holiday by making sure other people are available to do their work
- being aware of workloads – spotting and intervening if you notice unreasonable demands being placed on any one employee
- making sure managers are reminded that 'thank you' goes a long way in making staff feeling appreciated
Once you've made a start on tackling stress in your workplace, it's worth considering a longer-term strategy. It'll take more time and effort to set-up than the shorter-term fixes, but the results should be worth it. Suggestions for a longer-term solution include:
- Work environment: for example, are there distractions that you can remove, or changes that you can make to seating arrangements?
- Training: things job shadowing, refresher training or a more formal course run externally, can all help employees feel more in control of their working lives.
- Reducing possible pressure: pressure is part and parcel of most jobs at some point, but to make sure it doesn't become a permanent fixture, consider offering flexible working, or working from an office nearer home.
- 3rd party help: if your company has one, an Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) can provide independent, expert help (see Wellbeing section below)
- Self-help strategies: consider offering short courses on relaxation techniques and time management, or maybe introduce the option of an exercise class once a week. You could also advertise (on noticeboards or your intranet) websites that promote healthy eating, how to achieve a good work/life balance, etc.
The boss blues
We've all come across a cross-section of managers and a range of management styles in our careers. Some may be uncaring, inflexible or unsure. Others are nurturing, empathic and supportive. Either way, management style, good or bad, has a direct effect on staff wellbeing and morale.
Training newly-appointed managers in man-management techniques can be one way to equip someone stepping into the role. Key management behaviours to consider include:
- Being responsible and showing respect – managers can understandably get annoyed with their staff, but it's up to them to manage their emotions and conduct all interactions in a considered manner.
- Managing and communicating workloads – let your staff know what's coming up so they can better manage their workloads. It's also good to take an open problem solving approach with employees – that collaborative approach will help empower employees.
- Treating people individuals within the team – this includes having an open-door policy (we know it's easier said than done when you've got a lot on, but it really will help). Also, where you can, try to empathise with employees and offer flexibility in hours, workload, or location to help employees manage their individual work/life balance.
- Offer support with managing difficult situations: managing conflict is harder for some people than others. Where you see difficult situations arising, offer support and, if needs be, take responsibility for resolving the issue.
Acas' Guidance: managing people has a number of practical suggestions
Stress at Work: 15 Warning Signs to Watch Out For
Many factors in our life that can cause stress, but one of the top causes is work, according to the American Institute of Stress. As we strive for excellence in the workplace, we end up burning the candle at both ends without even realising it.
And while a little stress is healthy and occasionally unavoidable, it’s imperative that you keep cortisol levels (the steroid hormone responsible for stress) to a healthy state. But minimalising your stress levels is difficult when you don’t even realise that you’re overdoing it!
Here are the top 15 signs to watch out for that your work is causing you unnecessary stress.
1. You Rarely Leave Your Desk
If you’re so bogged down that you can’t find a minute to make a cup of coffee or eat lunch away from your desk, then it’s clear that you’re overly stressed.
Being chained to your desk is unhealthy for many reasons: you’re straining your eyes, you’re not giving yourself time to have a break and refocus, and you’re not stretching your legs, which all lead to decreased productivity and motivation.
2. You Forget Easily
If you don’t break away from your desk and rest your eyes, it’s only logical that you forget things.
According to a study carried out by stress expert Robert Sapolsky at Stanford University, while stress initially energises the brain by sending blood to it, after a short while of constantly being stressed (30 minutes), the body stops sending extra blood to the brain. This, as a result, causes us to be less focused and alert, which can easily lead to a constant cycle of forgetfulness.
3. You Have Aches and Pains
When you’re worried, you feel tense, both physically and psychologically, but sometimes it’s hard to differentiate between backaches from a chair or headaches from staring at the screen for too long as an indicator of stress. However, if you’re constantly going home feeling you’ve completed an eight-hour weight training session, you can definitely thank (or blame) stress.
4. You Suffer from Insomnia
Even though you feel physically exhausted at the end of a working day, you tend to spend all night tossing and turning, because you can’t get that important end-of-year report your mind.
If this sounds something you can relate to, then use it as a wakeup call to be more mindful of your emotional wellbeing.
Start a relaxing bedtime routine that involves turning off all your electronic devices and focusing on your wellness through breathing exercises and mindfulness.
5. You Eat Lots of Junk Food
A less obvious sign of workplace stress is overindulging in greasy food, including sugar, fatty carbohydrates and fast food.
Although they initially give you a high, they make you crash within a few hours, making you feel more lethargic and less motivated than ever before.
So, if your ideal evening consists of hurrying home from work to eat junk food and binge-watch your favourite Netflix series, then you may be dealing with workplace stress.
6. You Turn to Alcohol for Release
Are you destressing with a glass of wine or two in the evening? Although it might seem innocent at first, if you get into the routine of relying on alcohol to take your stresses away at the end of the day, it might result in a vicious cycle of increased anxiety and mood swings.
7. You’re Easily Agitated
Is the printer jam grating on your last nerve? Is the fact that your colleague left the toilet seat up making you extremely angry? If you notice that you’re getting annoyed with the smallest things in the workplace, it could be a great indication that it’s all getting a little too much for you. This agitation can also be transferred to your home life – for example, you can end up arguing with your partner because they’ve left their shoes by the door or forgotten a load of washing in the washing machine.
8. You’re Always Ill
If you’re constantly fighting off the flu, it’s a clear sign that your body is screaming for help. Stress weakens the immune system, and it makes our bodies more susceptible to viruses.
‘When people are stressed, they get sick,’ says Dr Shanna Levine. ‘It could be a cold or cold sores, which pop up because the immune system can't suppress the virus’.
If you find yourself constantly sick, you can use natural remedies, combined with a healthy diet and plenty of rest to make yourself fit again.
9. You Spend a Lot of Time Procrastinating
When you’re distracted by workplace stress, you’re more ly to procrastinate, worrying about everything that you need to complete instead of knuckling down and working on your issues.
This procrastination then causes a higher level of stress, and you can end up feeling completely overwhelmed.
If you find yourself procrastinating, it’s ideal to take a break and calm your mind; you’ll then be in a much better position at tackling your tasks and taking control of your to-do list.
10. You Have Acne
Sadly, the teenage nightmare sneaks back into adulthood when we are extremely stressed out! Cortisol causes our skin glands to produce more oil which naturally contributes to clogged pores, but there are even more factors that contribute to bad skin.
I bet you haven’t noticed how frequently you touch your face when you’re feeling stressed out? You think about something and scratch your forehead, or you deliberate about something and rest your hand on your chin. But these innocent actions spread bacteria to the face, and with a weakened immune system, you’ve instantly developed acne overnight!
11. You’re Experiencing Hair Loss
Hair loss is normal, and most of us lose between 80 to 100 hairs per day, but if you notice an irregular amount of shedding, it could be due to increased stress. When you’re stressed out, your natural hair cycle is disrupted, pushing a large number of follicles into the resting phase, which then increases the amount of hairs that fall out.
12. You’re Anxious
If you’re always thinking of the worst case scenario or you’re experiencing frequent heart palpitations, you could be suffering from anxiety related to stress. You could be worried about losing your job or fearful that your boss doesn’t agree with the way that you’re working, causing you to doubt yourself and even constantly make careless mistakes.
13. Work Is Always on Your Mind
Is work constantly on your mind? While you’re in the shower, eating your breakfast, cooking dinner or getting into bed? If so, it’s a clear giveaway that you’re stressing too much about your duties in the workplace. If this is happening more and more frequently, take time off so you can switch off and unwind.
14. You Have Digestive Issues
Digestive issues such as constipation, excess gas and diarrhoea can all be caused by high levels of stress. ‘When the brain feels severely stressed,’ writes Chris Woolston for HealthDay, ‘it unleashes a cascade of hormones that can put the whole digestive system in an uproar’. If this stress is left untreated, it can cause irritable bowel syndrome and heartburn in the long term.
15. You Feel Depressed
Workplace stress can also make you undervalue yourself which, in turn, causes depression. If you feel you’re not good enough, there’s a high possibility that you’re feeling this way because you’re stressed at work. These thoughts could be caused by many factors, so it’s important to identify the areas that you’re not confident in and work on building your skills in those areas.
As you can see, there are many signs that your work can be causing you stress. But don’t immediately put these symptoms down to stress! It’s important to be aware of them and change your lifestyle to eliminate the causes.
Do you suffer from any of these symptoms? Let us know what’s stressing you out at work in the comments section below.
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