Take some time to reflect on your situation, work-life balance and your approach to health. Stress can have detrimental effects on your physical and mental wellbeing, sometimes leading to chronic long term health challenges, so proactive management is key. Below are some steps you can take to help you identify early triggers, combat stress levels and create a positive working environment.
Find the source of your stress
How can you manage this? What coping techniques work best for you? Everyone deals with stress differently so find techniques that work to keep you calm and motivated when you feel the pressure mounting.
Our top tips for managing stress
- Review your work-life balance
Even though we’re moving away from the pandemic, many of us are still working remotely. This can often make it difficult to set boundaries for when work stops and life starts (especially in the evenings!). Set these boundaries and stick to them – it is important to give yourself time to unwind.
Adding some structure to your diary, where you have commitments outside of work to look forward to, can help to prevent you from working long hours and create boundaries for a fulfilling work and social life.
- Practice meditation or yoga
Mindfulness and relaxation techniques can help to activate a state of restfulness and counterbalances the body’s fight or flight hormones.
- Manage your time and plan ahead
When you manage your time effectively and plan your workload you’re less likely to feel stressed. Good time management is essential for handling heavy workloads and can help to reduce long-term stress. It helps to increase productivity and creativity and puts you in control of your responsibilities.
- Prioritise a healthy lifestyle
Poor health habits can add stress to your life and affect your ability to manage it. It’s therefore essential to take time out to focus on your personal wellbeing and understand what makes you happy.
- Build in regular exercise
Exercise helps to balance the nervous system and increases blood circulation helping to flush out stress hormones. Even an average paced, 20 minute daily walk can make a difference.
- Monitor your water intake
Your adrenal glands produce extra cortisol, the stress hormone, when you’re stressed which often results in reduced electrolytes in the body. Drinking water can help to replenish electrolytes and reduce the physiological impact of stress.
- Ensure you have enough sleep
Sleep is a powerful stress reducer. It can calm and restore the body, support memory, retention and improve concentration. When you’re well rested you’re able to problem solve more effectively.
Changing your environment or just simply taking a break can reset your stress tolerance by increasing your mental and emotional outlook. Take a break from your laptop and phone and reconnect with nature.
- Do something you enjoy regularly
Whatever it is, whether it’s reading, listening to music, getting creative or something else, engage in activities that create happiness. Research shows enjoyment can reduce stress by almost half whilst also reducing your heart rate.
Spend time with people in your life that make you happy or who are important to people, it’s well known that talking face to face with people helps to reduce loneliness and releases those ‘feel good hormones’.
Work smarter, not harder
Prioritise, prioritise, prioritise! Know your deadlines and communicate with your team so you don’t get bogged down by several unnecessarily difficult tasks at once. It’s also a great idea to put easy, ‘mindless’ tasks on your to-do list that you know will get done. Completing any tasks, easy or hard, will make you feel positive, lowering stress levels (NHS)
Ask for help
Your superiors, HR team and work friends are all there to help you. If you’re feeling like stress is getting in the way of your work and affecting your mental health, talk to someone. A brief, informal chat can help you realise that you’re not alone and that there are a number of people who want to support.
Remember, stress isn’t always bad!
Stress can be energising and exciting. It can make you feel motivated to complete work to a high standard (NHS). It’s just important to understand and recognise the difference between good and bad stress and where that boundary lays.
As we spend so much time at work it’s essential that we take the time to prioritise our health and manage the implications associated with stress to maximise our enjoyment in and outside the office.
If you’re looking for a new role, whether it’s remote, hybrid, temporary or permanent, we can help. View our available vacancies here or speak to a specialist.