Simple ways to reduce workplace stress

Workplace StressCC: 1388843 at Pixabay

As most employers know, a happy worker is a productive worker. Many people throughout the United States experience workplace stress. Around 29% claim to experience extreme stress levels, resulting in miserable working lives.

Whether you own a business or you’re an employee, managing workplace stress is your responsibility. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some top tips.

Identify workplace stress triggers

It isn’t unusual to know that you’re feeling stressed but not understand why. A seemingly amazing job can suddenly leave you unable to sleep, anxious, and exhausted.

To make resolving workplace stress easier, you need to keep a diary of your triggers for two weeks. Each time you feel your anxiety heightening, write down what happened to make you feel that way. With two weeks’ worth of entries, you should understand where your stress is coming from.

Create boundaries

One of the commonest causes of workplace stress is high workloads. We live in a society where it’s practically unacceptable to say “no.” Additionally, many people tend to wear their busy lifestyles as a badge of pride.

Unfortunately, having too much on your plate or allowing your employees to reach that point isn’t conducive to productivity. If you’re an employer, consider whether you’re expecting too much of those who work for you. Similarly, as an employee, start identifying where you can say “no” and become assertive in doing so.

Develop healthy responses to stressful events

If you’re the type of person who dives for fast food or a glass of wine when workplace stress becomes too much, you’re not alone. Although these measures may numb the pain temporarily, they’re not healthy long-term fixes that will manage your stress better.

According to Harvard University, meditating gives you the tools to tell the difference between unnecessary anxieties and problem-solving thoughts. Exercising floods your body with endorphins, which act as natural painkillers for negative emotions.

While exercising, meditating, and eating healthy foods are not the most appealing options, they’re the most beneficial ones. Forcing yourself to try them rather than heading for the nearest drive-thru will pay dividends in managing your workplace stress levels.

Adopt telecommuting practices

Did you know that the average American spends 4.35 hours per week commuting? Over the course of a year, that amounts to nine working days.

Telecommuting is becoming increasingly popular and it’s a viable way to reduce workplace stress. When you can drop the commute for one or two days per week, you’ll get more done. Being away from a hectic work environment more often reduces your stress levels in itself.

Thanks to the Internet, working from home is possible for most professionals. If this is an agreement you can create in your workplace, you may find that employees become more productive as a result.

Taking small steps toward limiting workplace stress pays big benefits. Try introducing one at a time and see how your working life changes.

About the Author

Laura McKeever
Laura has been a freelance medical writer for eight years. With a BSc in Medical Sciences and an MSc in Physician Assistant Studies, she complements her passion for medical news with real-life experiences. Laura’s most significant experience included writing for international pharmaceutical brands, including GSK.