Stressed people in your business can lead to a more chaotic working environment and sometimes, to more insurance claims being made.
Here are our top tips to make your work environment as stress-free as possible!
- Take Control
Understand and believe that you are in control of yourself. You hold the key to managing all areas of your life, including your stress levels! Make self-care a priority to really take control of your life.
- Get Enough Sleep
Begin self-care at home by ensuring you get enough sleep. The amount of sleep differs from person to person, so pay attention to how much you need to feel rested. Avoid screens, difficult reading and vigorous exercise before bed.
- Try to be Organised
Easy to say! It can be difficult to get organised to leave the house in the mornings when it involves many people going in different directions. Whether it’s in the morning or the night before, give yourself time to prepare an efficient morning routine that includes preparing nutritional snacks and a healthy lunch. Worrying about what to eat can cause stress and anxiety. You are less likely to eat the wrong foods if you come to work prepared. If you haven’t taken the time to organise your mornings, you are more likely to start off the day frazzled and to continue that way!
- Prepare a Conducive Work Environment
Take some time to create a space that is conducive to a nice working environment. If your company allows it, personalise your work area with items that are meaningful to you, such as artwork, photos, or plants. Arrange your space in a way that makes you comfortable and allows for easy access to files or items that you use frequently. Place items that you need to do your job within easy reach. This cuts down on those little frustrations that can build up into stress over time.
- Maintain Good Posture
Maintaining the correct physical alignment throughout the day will reduce stress on your back. Adjust your chair for good lumbar support and add small pillows for extra support if you need them. Paying attention to how your body feels in the work environment can go a long way to helping reduce stress and anxiety.
- Take Breaks
If your job involves a lot of sitting, get up and walk around or stretch every half hour or so to keep the blood moving. Even if you exercise regularly, prolonged sitting is not good for the heart, so build activity into your work day. Movement is important for reducing stress and anxiety. Likewise, if your job involves a lot of standing or physical activity, it’s important to take moments of stillness throughout the day. Don’t underestimate the power of closing your eyes and breathing. Deep breathing increases the oxygen in the blood, improves mental clarity, relaxes muscles, and lowers blood pressure. A few minutes of deep breathing will clear the mind and help you refocus your energy.
- Not too much Caffeine!
While research suggests some therapeutic effect from moderate coffee intake, caffeine is a stimulant and can be addictive. Excessive consumption is also linked to many chronic conditions, such as high blood pressure and headaches. Moderation is the key here. If you are experiencing the jitters, try cutting down on the number of cups you drink a day or changing to decaffeinated coffee or herbal tea. Adding sugar to your cup can affect your energy level and bring on that afternoon crash, so it is a good idea to limit sweeteners, too.
- Be Positive
Whatever steps you choose to take to manage workplace stress, your attitude makes a big difference. A positive outlook on life and work can reduce stress across the board and you always have a choice to view a situation in a positive or negative light. Yet even with a positive attitude, conflicts will still arise. When this happens, don’t respond immediately; take a few deep breaths and calm down. If you are feeling overwhelmed, change your physical environment by stepping away or taking a walk. Then, process what happened and try to understand the other person’s perspective. Acknowledge your feelings as valid and see their feelings’ validity, as well.
- Take time off
No matter how positive your outlook, stepping away from the job from time to time is important. Taking a holiday usually helps people to relax and to be more productive on their return. Taking a break to do something you enjoy can give you new perspective and energy. Short breaks during the day can have a similar effect. Don’t eat lunch at your desk. Eat elsewhere and take a walk to feel refreshed and motivated. Taking a few minutes away from work can also help you fight off illnesses that can lead to work piling up and more stress.
- Find a Hobby
What you do in your free time can have an important effect on the amount of stress in your life. Hobbies, classes and exercise can help you relax during your down time and make you more effective at work. Pick hobbies that inspire you. Exercise contributes to better physical health but also to better mental health and strengthens mind, body, and spirit. When you feel relaxed and balanced, it helps reduce overall stress both at home and in the workplace.