With Stress Awareness Month in April, it is important to raise awareness about the causes and effects of stress in the workplace, including ways to prevent and manage it.
In a recent poll by Blake Oliver, it was discovered that 48% of people found that financial pressures were the biggest challenge in achieving a healthy work-life balance, and a whopping 38% found that work-related stress was a barricade to achieving a healthy work-life balance.
This poll highlights the growing concern about work-related stress in today’s fast-paced and competitive work environment! It is a type of stress that is caused by the demands and pressures of work, including deadlines, long hours, heavy workloads, job insecurity, interpersonal conflicts and lack of control. Work-related stress can affect physical and mental health, as well as job performance and overall well-being.
The good news, there are steps can take to manage work-related stress.
Here are our tips for managing work-related stress:
- Prioritise and organise: Identify the most important tasks that need to be completed and prioritise them. Create a to-do list each morning and break down large tasks into smaller, more manageable ones. Organise your workday to ensure that you have enough time to complete your tasks. We recommend the ‘eat the frog’ approach and complete your biggest task (or the one you procrastinate the most #iykyk) as early in the day as possible; get it over and done with.
- Practise mindfulness: Mindfulness is a technique that involves being fully present and aware of your thoughts, feelings and surroundings. Practising mindfulness can help reduce stress and improve focus. Take a few minutes each day to practice mindfulness exercises, such as deep breathing or meditation.
- Take breaks: Taking regular breaks throughout the day can help reduce stress and increase productivity. Take short breaks to stretch, walk or get some fresh air. Also, avoid working through lunch breaks.
- Stay active: Regular exercise can help reduce stress and improve mood. Try to incorporate physical activity into your daily routine. This could be as simple as taking a walk during your lunch break or doing some stretching exercises at your desk.
- Set boundaries: Setting boundaries between work and personal life can help reduce stress and improve work-life balance. Avoid checking work emails or taking work-related calls during your personal time. Set aside time for activities that you enjoy, such as spending time with family or pursuing hobbies.
- Seek support: Talking to a trusted friend or family member can help reduce stress and provide emotional support. Consider joining a support group or seeking counselling to help manage stress and improve mental health. A lot of companies offer an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) which is confidential. If your workplace does not offer EAP, there are services you can access through Medicare; all you need to do is ask your GP for a Mental Health Treatment Plan and they will provide you with a referral.
- Practice self-care: Taking care of yourself can help reduce stress and improve overall well-being. Practise self-care activities such as getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet and engaging in activities that bring you joy.
By incorporating these strategies into your daily routine, you can effectively manage work-related stress and improve your overall well-being. Remember that managing stress is a process, and it may take time to find the strategies that work best for you. Be patient and persistent, and don’t hesitate to seek help if you need it.
We encourage employers and employees to work together to prevent and manage work-related stress to create a healthy and productive work environment. By taking steps to reduce stress and promote well-being, businesses can create a more engaged, productive and motivated workforce.