A poll of 2000 professionals by CABA found that ‘4 in 10 adults in the UK are close to breaking point at work,’ they also found that the average worker feels stressed for ‘almost a third of their entire working day.’
In the United Kingdom, on the first Wednesday of every November, is National Stress Awareness Day. The aim is to get people to open up about struggles with stress and consider ways they can reduce it, particularly in the workplace.
As well as being a cause of anxiety and depression, stress is also linked to physical health issues. When we get stressed our body releases a hormone called cortisol. A lifetime of repeated release of the hormone has been linked to higher instances of cardiovascular disease, auto-immune disorders, and Alzheimer’s.
There are some common stressors that contribute to being stressed at work. For example, deadlines, the fear of being let go, being micromanaged, increased workload without better job satisfaction or pay, and the pressure to work at 100% capacity all the time.
When stressors start to pile up, it’s time to take a deep breath, step back, identify them and work towards alleviating them. Here’s some ideas that might help.
Ways to prevent or relieve stress:
- Meditation: ‘Meditation is one of the easiest ways to reduce stress at work,’ explains Ed, our Content and PR Manager here at Spacebase, who organises daily meditation. ‘We try to meet in the afternoon around 15.30 for some stretching exercises and then we meditate together for 10-15 minutes. It can be a good way to refresh if you’re having a mid-afternoon slump, and to restore some calm if it’s been a frantic day.’
- Take a break: concentration drops after around 90 minutes of work. Take a quick break and go for a walk around the block, getting fresh air doesn’t just help you calm down, but also re-energise. If you don’t want to go outside, get yourself a camomile tea and sit alone for ten or so minutes in a quiet area.
- Make boundaries: switch off, stop working excessive overtime, take a holiday! Since the advent of mobile technology, separating work from your private life is increasingly difficult. Define when you are working and when it’s your free time, otherwise sleep becomes your only real break.
- Confide in someone: sometimes you just need a good rant to a friend, but confiding in your supervisor can lead to real changes that will help resolve some of your issues. It could just be coming up with a plan to improve your time management or getting support from colleagues.
If you’re struggling, don’t suffer in silence. Speak to your GP or a trusted friend/colleague.
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