If just the mere thought of a busy working day makes you dull and miserable, it clearly suggests that you cannot cope well with the stressors at your workplace. Job stress is very common and several researches have proven that workplaces are a major cause of mental stress in people.
You cannot always avoid the pressures at your job. But you can definitely take necessary measures to manage them. Read on to find out everything about workplace stress, it’s causes, effects and some useful strategies to deal with it at an individual level.
What Is Workplace Stress
The words itself are self explanatory. To put it simply, workplace stress is the mental pressure that one feels at their place of work due to varied reasons. It is a reaction or a response that people may display when they cannot cope with the challenges at work.
Stress, as commonly perceived, is not always harmful and may have positive effects like improved work performance and timely completion of targets. But when this pressure exceeds and becomes difficult to handle, it hampers the employees’ performance and wellbeing.
Common Causes Of Workplace Stress
Some common stressors at the workplace include:
- Overload Of Information: When one is exposed to too much of information, it causes confusion and interferes with the workers’ focus and performance.
- Inadequate Salary: Low pay is the biggest reason why employees quit their job. An employee dissatisfied with his/her salary is less productive and has low morale.
- Toxic Coworkers: Working around toxic colleagues can be hard and this can make your professional and personal life stressful.
- Excessive Workload: An overworked employee is always exhausted and stressed. This reduces his/her work efficiency and makes the employee susceptible to numerous health issues.
- Fear Of Evaluation And Judgement: Constantly being concerned about getting judged and evaluated at workplace is also a major cause of stress in employees.
- Confusing Role Demands: When an organisation gives unclear information about the expectations and demands anticipated from an employee, it causes uncertainty and stress at the workplace.
Effects Of Prolonged Stress At Workplace
Uncontrolled job stress is detrimental and can disrupt a worker’s professional as well as personal life. Consequences of workplace stress can be analysed under three categories:
- Physiological Effects: Stress leads to changes in metabolism, heart rate, breathing pattern etc. It increases the chance of illnesses like diabetes, asthma, insomnia and cardiovascular diseases.
- Behavioral Effects: Stress at work causes a rise in issues like anger, violence and substance abuse. Further, it reduces an employee’s work performance, punctuality, focus and morale.
- Psychological Effects: Work related stress can cause frustration, nervousness, burnout, and even serious conditions like depression and anxiety.
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Ways To Cope With Workplace Stress
The following ways will help you effectively relieve work related stress:
1. Adopt Time Management Habits
Time is a crucial resource, both for the worker and the organisation. It’s judicious use is the key to success and satisfaction in employees. Good time management practices like proper planning, prioritisation of tasks, work delegation, deciding goals, setting deadlines, result monitoring and evaluation will have a positive impact on the employee’s performance and reap good outcomes. All this eventually reduces work related stress and tension.
2. Skip Multitasking
Multitasking is usually thought of as a great way to utilise time and get more things done faster. But for most people, all it does is split their focus and reduce productivity. This ultimately affects the quality of work. Instead of juggling multiple projects, doing them in chunks or one at a time can alleviate a lot of pressure. In fact, the the chores will be done quicker and bear better results.
3. Engage In Some Physical Activity
Stress can cause many physical ailments too. And as most jobs involve sitting for very long durations, the body gets stiff. Thus, it is necessary to take breaks every few hours to walk or stretch. Further, you can also go for yoga classes or gym after your work schedule to remain fit and stress free.
4. Stay Around Positive Influences
If someone at work is making you feel demotivated and stressed consistently, you may be dealing with a toxic colleague. Toxic coworkers are harmful for both, the employees and the organisation. They create havoc, demean and demotivate others. Working with them can negatively impact your performance and drain your mental strength. It is best to distance yourself from such individuals and be around people who are optimistic and inspire others.
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5. Talk It Out
It helps to speak up about your stress and troubles to a trusted person. That person maybe a colleague, friend, family or even your manager. Being stressed is nothing to be humiliated about. In fact, it gets worse if not addressed. If the stress is too hard to handle, you shouldn’t hesitate in talking to a therapist.
6. Create Work Life Balance
Work, without a doubt, is very important for sustenance in life. But if an employee doesn’t give enough time to his/her personal needs, it can gravely impact their work. It is vital for workers to balance their work and personal life. Giving appropriate time and attention to your family, health and other necessities will increase your determination towards work and yield good results. Work should remain at the workplace and not invade your peaceful home.
It is essential for every employee to effectively manage stress at workplace. Remember, taking care of your well-being will allow you to better perform your duties. If you are finding it very difficult to cope, do not hesitate to meet a counsellor or a therapist.
How do you manage stress at workplace? Do tell us in the comments.