Suffering From Work-Related Stress or Anxiety?
If so, you aren't alone. According to a study conducted by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), 40% of workers in the U.S. say their job is "very stressful," and 25% believe it's the largest cause of stress in their life (source).
Workers are often stressed for a number of different reasons, such as the potential for being laid off, meeting deadlines, trying to appease their boss, financial worries, etc. But these stresses are confined to the boundaries of the workplace; workers may bring them home where the stresses continue to take a toll on their physical and emotional well-being.
Effects of Work-Related Stress:
- Increases the risk of stroke, heart attack and other forms of cardiovascular disease.
- May lead to high blood pressure (hypertension).
- Disrupts normal sleep patterns.
- Promotes irritability and other mood changes.
- Impaired immune function.
- Increased risk of developing ulcers.
- Increased risk of suffering from a work-related injury.
- Higher medical costs.
- Difficulty concentrating.
- and much, much more...
"Studies show that stressful working conditions are actually associated with increased absenteeism, tardiness, and intentions by workers to quit their jobs-all of which have a negative effect on the bottom line," wrote the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
So, how can you reduce your work-related stress levels and enjoy a relaxing day on the job? Stress is inherit in some jobs, but thankfully there are precautions workers can take to reduce their overall stress levels.
If you are suffering from work-related stress, try to get into the habit of performing deep breathing exercises on a regular basis. When you are feeling the onset of stress, stop what you are doing, take a deep breath, hold it in for 3 seconds and release. Continue doing this for 5 minutes and you should notice an improvement in your stress levels. Deep breathing exercises work in a similar manner as meditation, as it calms both your body and mind to relieve stress and tension.
The CDC noted that making "organizational changes" can reduce work-related stress levels as well. If you are stressed about finishing a project by a specific deadline, perhaps you could restructure your workload to improve your efficiency. Otherwise small and simple organizational changes can make a world of difference in your ability to complete a task by a deadline, and subsequently your stress levels.