Job pressure is the number one cause of stress in the United States*, with 77-percent reporting they regularly experience physical symptoms caused by stress—including fatigue, headache, upset stomach, and muscle tension—and 48-percent reporting that the stress has a negative impact on their personal and professional life.
That stops now!
Because stress doesn’t have to be your constant co-worker, Masiello Employment has rounded up our Top 9 Stop-the-Stress Tips to help you handle anything your work day throws your way.
Take a Series of Slow, Deep Breaths: By changing the way you breathe—specifically, by slowing down your breaths and inhaling deeply—you reduce adrenaline levels and promote a sense of calm.
Kick Back With Carbs: Turn on your brain’s calming reward center with an inherently pleasurable snack—think of a high-calorie, high-carb, high-fat treat like Skippy on Ritz. Just don’t overdo it!
Take a Sip: Enjoying a cup of coffee or tea is also rewarding for your brain (and your mood) and keeps you energized while it keeps you from getting dehydrated, which is its own kind of stressor.
Eat a Good Lunch: Follow-up your indulgent snack with a good-for-you lunch, especially one that includes mood-improving Omega-3 fatty acids (think of a tuna salad sandwich and a handful of walnuts).
Look for a Laugh: Take a moment to talk with a really funny co-worker (on break, please!) or think of an amusing memory or your favorite joke—laughter releases mood-improving endorphins and decreases stress hormones.
Work Those Muscles. Whether you drive machinery or sit at a desk, your muscles can get tense—find relief by tightening and relaxing one muscle group at a time (it’s called progressive muscle relaxation).
Move. Throughout your day, take short breaks and move, even if it’s just to walk to the rest room (take the long way)—if you can, stretch your back, arms, and legs as well as your jaw, where stress can settle.
Be Thankful. When you’re feeling stressed, it’s easy to focus on all the things that are bothering you—switch things up by focusing, instead, on all the things that are going right, and be thankful for each one.
Say Something. Connect with co-workers or management and work out how you can get exactly what you need to best perform your job—be open, honest, and realistic in your requests and expectations.
We hope these nine tips help you combat stress at work—of course, most can be used in your personal life as well, like when your least-favorite relative starts to talk politics.
*According to a 2016 study on stress conducted by Statistic Brain Research Institute