Saturday, October 18, 2014

If You Don’t Manage Your Stress, Your Stress Will Manage You

Optimizing Stress
Optimizing Stress (Photo credit: cheerfulmonk)

Every work place has stress and if you have found a job with no stress that can still pay the bills I’d love for you to leave a comment!

But most jobs do have stress and how we handle it can affect how well we do our job.  If you don’t learn to manage your stress, the truth is that your stress might manage you right out of a job!  Stress management is something that everyone needs to learn whether they are working for an employer or running a business or running a family. 

Here are some common but very useful ways to manage your stress:
  • Eat better - quit skipping breakfast and/or lunch.  Seriously.  When you skip meals your brain doesn't function nearly as well as it should and not only can you not handle the stress you already have but you’re likely to create more stress by making mistakes.  Bring portable breakfasts with you to work if you need to and make sure that you always have a stock of fruits and veggies in the staff fridge.
  • Move around when you take breaks.  There’s no rule that says you have to take your break in the lunch room or cafeteria.  Try getting out and going for a walk to a coffee shop that is further away or skip the coffee altogether (too much will make you jittery and that’s not good for stress levels) and walk around the blog a couple times.  And whatever  you do, don’t take breaks at your desk!  How can you relax when your stressors are sitting right there in front of you?
  • Have a moment.  Really - when you need to let something out and instead hold it all in that just makes you feel like a shaken up bottle of cola with the lid on.  Find a trusted friend to vent to (you might want to take it away from the office building if venting means foul language).  Find a storage closet where you can hide a pillow and cover your face with it and have a good scream or jump up and down and stomp your feet.  Get it out or the explosion is going to be nasty!
  • Find your happy place.  Remember Happy Gilmore and his happy place?  Worked for him.  Create a place in your mind where you can smell the scents, feel, taste, hear and feel like you are really there.  There might be certain people there that you find very calming or it might be a specific location.  Get used to going there so that when you need it, it will be very easy to bring it to your mind.
  • Break it up.  We get stressed often because there just seems to be too much in front of us.  I’ve likened it to looking at pictures on your computer.  When you have too many big pictures open your computer gets a little slow.  So quit looking at every big picture at once and take one big picture and cut it into smaller picture into little parts so you can focus on each part individually.  Quit looking at so many big pictures and you will have less stress.


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