Allow For Flexible Hours And Remote Working
You hired your employees because you have confidence in their ability to do their jobs well and in a timely mannerso let them prove it. Your office shouldnt feel like a cell, but rather a place that facilitates getting a job done. Let your employees know that their job is defined by the quality and timeliness of their work, not when they punch the clock.
Allow your employees to work remotely, and give flexibility for start and end times. This freedom is great for office morale, and the policy shows employees that you trust them enough not to babysit.
Set Limits On What You Will Tolerate From A Bully
Most importantly, once you have set the limit in your mind, exercise your right to tell the bully to stop the behavior. You might want to rehearse these steps with a friend so that you are more comfortable responding when the bully attacks.
1. Describe the behavior you see the bully exhibitingdont editorialize or offer opinions, just describe what you see. Don’t say you’re mean and nasty to me. to the bully. This is meaningless commentary when you’re talking to a bully.
Better? You regularly enter my cubicle, lean over my shoulder, and read my personal correspondence on my computer screen.
2. Tell the bully exactly how his behavior is having an impact on your work.
Because much of my work is confidential, these actions make me feel as if I need to hide what I am working on from you or change computer screens which is a waste of my time.
3. Tell the bully what behavior you will not put up with in the future.
In the future, you are not to enter my cubicle unless I invite you to come in. This is my private workspace and your actions are unwelcome.
4. Stick with your statement and if the bully violates your space, move on to confrontation.
You cannot allow the bully to get away with the behavior even one more time or the groundwork you so carefully laid is wasted.
Talk To Your Office Friends During Work Breaks
According to the Mayo Clinic, spending time with friends is a great stress reliever. This is because spending time with friends promotes the secretion of Oxytocin in your body. Oxytocin is a happy hormone that brings a reduction in the levels of the stress hormone- Cortisol. As a result, your work stress level lowers down. Thus, it is vital for you to have regular conversations with your friends. For this, you can simply call your office friends during your mini work breaks. Further, make sure not to indulge in long conversations as they may distract you from work.
To conclude, work stress is an integral part of your life. It can act adversely if its level rises beyond the normal. So, it is important for you to manage work stress. You can do so effectively by practicing the different ways of stress management mentioned above.
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Employees Should Be Encouraged To Take Breaks During The Day To Help Manage Stress
Short breaks throughout the day allow employees to recharge and refocus. Regular breaks help employees work more effectively.
Do This: Encourage employees to take regular mini-breaks. If leaders take breaks and invite others to join, they likely will. This will help set the acceptable length and type of a break. Walk for five minutes, stretch, get some fresh air, meditate, listen to music, or even just get a glass of water. Also suggest that employees get away from their desks during the lunch hour.
What Is Social Support
Social support has been described as âsupport accessible to an individual through social ties to other individuals, groups, and the larger community.â The National Cancer Institute’s Dictionary of Cancer Terms defines social support as âa network of family, friends, neighbors, and community members that is available in times of need to give psychological, physical, and financial helpâ . Theoretical models of social support specify the following two important dimensions: a structural dimension, which includes network size and frequency of social interactions, and a functional dimension with emotional and instrumental components. Most research has found that quality of relationships is a better predictor of good health than quantity of relationships , although both are important.
It should be noted that the optimal source of social support may depend on the developmental stage of the person who is receiving the support. For example, parental support seems to be more valuable in early adolescence than it is in late adolescence. It has been shown that the perception of social support is associated with the degree of social interaction in the elderly and with instrumental support in younger adults. Moreover, the type of social support seems to be important in conferring resilience to stress. In a sample of childhood sexual abuse survivors, a combination of self-esteem support and appraisal support was most useful in preventing the development of PTSD.
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Employee Assignments Should Challenge Their Abilities Without Overwhelming Them
Employees need to be challenged but not overloaded. Challenge helps employees develop skills, makes work interesting, and helps maintain motivation.
But it is just not possible for people to perform well for extended periods of time when workloads are to heavy. Working this way leads to irritability, exhaustion, reduced productivity and ultimately, illness, and injury.
Do This: Give employees the option of calling a time out when they feel overwhelmed. This will help establish a norm around working smarter, not harder. Employees can easily identify unproductive activities when asked. Asking them on a periodic basis will help you keep your operations streamlined.
Drink Alcohol In Moderation And Avoid Nicotine
Alcohol temporarily reduces anxiety and worry, but too much of it can cause anxiety when it subsides. Drinking to reduce stress at work can ultimately lead to alcohol abuse and dependence.
Similarly, smoking may have a calming effect when you feel stressed and overwhelmed, but nicotine is a powerful stimulant – leading to higher, not lower, anxiety levels.
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Learn To Identify Signs Of Stress
You might not even know youâre feeling stressed. Sounds strange, but itâs possible. Even if you donât know the true level of stress youâre feeling, your body does. The damage that stress does happens whether you are aware itâs bad or not.
There are several signs that stress might be affecting you:
- Feeling anxious, grumpy, or depressed.
- Feeling apathy or disinterest in your job.
- Feeling overwhelming dread about your job.
- Difficulty getting a good nightâs sleep.
- General fatigue and tiredness.
- Socially withdrawing from others .
- Using alcohol, drugs, or other destructive coping mechanisms.
If you see a pattern like this list in your life, you need to take action.
Best Answers To How Do You Handle Stress
1. I work well under pressure, and do my best to complete tasks on time even in stressful situations. When I find myself under a lot of pressure because of a deadline, I make a specific schedule for myself to help me get my work done, and having specific times for each task helps me manage it.
The interviewer wants to know how stress will affect your work, and if youre able to still work hard under pressure. Deadlines are a reality at every job, so sharing a specific way that you handle the stress of deadlines is a great way to answer this question. When youre sharing a specific example, its also important that the stress wasnt caused by you. Its okay to say you were under pressure because of a deadline, but dont say you were stressed because you missed the deadline.
2. When Im in a stressful situation, I try to focus on what I need to fix, instead of how Im feeling. If Im feeling stressed because of an issue with a client, I try to focus on what I can do specifically to fix the situation instead of thinking about how stressed I am.
Stress can be overwhelming for many employees, and some let it get the best of them. When an employer asks you how you handle stress, they want to make sure that youre not going to give in to your emotions when youre in a stressful situation. This answer works because it shows that you choose to focus on the task at hand instead of getting angry or overwhelmed.
Also Check: What Are Symptoms Of Post Traumatic Stress
Make Sure You Have The Skills You Need
How hard can a job search be? Believe meyou dont know it all no one does. Read blogs, articles, and/or books about career planning and job searching. Explore your field or potential occupations to determine if you need more skills to be competitive. Read articles or watch videos related to your desired job or about job searching and interviewing every day.
Less Stress And More Success
Unfortunately, theres no strategy to eliminate stress on your team entirely. But, even acknowledging that stress at work is a prevalent problem and finding some ways to alleviate the stress on your employees is a huge step in the right direction.
As a manager, if you show your team that you trust them and you care about their wellbeing, that alone helps reduce some of the tension for them, concludes Dr. Langley, Because they know that they are valued.
Want to learn more about stress in the workplace and how it might be silently sabotaging your team? Download our report The Stress Epidemic: Employees Are Looking for a Way Out for everything you need to know.
Banner photo: Andrew Slate for Wrike
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Respect Their Time Away From The Office
In our Stress and Productivity Survey, 67% of respondents state that their average daily stress levels range from moderate to unsustainably high.
Heres whats even more interesting: Those same respondents are 84% more likely to say that receiving an email or text message from a superior outside of work hours has a high impact on their stress level compared to respondents who experience lower stress on a daily basis.
What does this mean for you? If youre guilty of pinging employees when theyre out of the office whether its for the weekend, a vacation, or other days off youre only adding to their already-high stress levels.
Put simply, resist the urge to get in touch when you know they arent on the clock. Give them the time they need to recharge.
Tip: If you absolutely need to get an important note or reminder out of your brain and down on paper, either save it as a draft to be sent when that employee returns or make it clear that you dont expect an immediate response by including something like NOT URGENT or DONT RESPOND UNTIL YOURE BACK directly in the subject line.
Take Time To Recharge
Taking even a few minutes of personal time during a busy day can help prevent burnout.
Listening to an interesting podcast in between meetings or watching a funny Youtube video can give you relaxing pauses throughout the day.
Its also important to take breaks from thinking about your job by not checking work-related emails on your time off or disconnecting from your phone in the evenings.
Sometimes, feeling overwhelmed by work comes down to how organized you are. Try setting up a priority list at the beginning of your work week by preparing tasks and ranking them according to importance.
You can also beat procrastination by setting aside specific time blocks for deep concentration work.
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Move More Eat Well Sleeeeep
Its pretty well-known that exercise lowers stress, reduces anxiety and improves mood. And the good news is: you dont need to run a marathon to get the benefits. It takes just 30 minutes of exercise a day to make a difference. Weve got some tips on how to exercise when you’re not motivated.
Diet and sleep are also really important for your wellbeing. A healthy diet will make you feel healthier and stronger and better able to handle stress, while enough sleep positively affects your mood and stress levels.
Engage In Regular Physical Activity
Engaging in physical activity frequently can also help healthily cope with stress. When you constantly move your body, it promotes blood circulation, which helps eliminate stress hormones. Furthermore, it also boosts your bodys production of endorphins which is the chemical responsible for elevating your mood. Dont worry, as engaging in physical activities doesnt mean hitting the gym every day.
Even a 1520-minute walk around the neighborhood every day is enough to make a difference and reduce your stress levels. You can also incorporate regular physical activity into your day-to-day routine. For instance, you can bike or walk your way to work to promote emotional and physical health. If you have the option between taking the elevator or the stairs, take the stairs if possible. Overall, regular physical activity isnt only for your physical health but also your mental and emotional health.
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Task Management Tips To Reduce Stress At Work
- Prioritize tasks. Make a list of the tasks you need to complete and tackle them in order of importance. Tackle high priority items and unpleasant tasks first. This will make the rest of your day more enjoyable and less stressful.
- Break big projects down into small, manageable steps. Focus on one manageable step at a time, rather than taking it all in at once.
- Delegate responsibility. You don’t have to do everything yourself. If other people can do the job, why not let them? Let go of the desire to control or supervise every little step. In so doing, you let go of unnecessary stress.
- Be willing to compromise. If you ask someone to engage in a task differently, revise a deadline, or change their behavior at work, you should be willing to do the same. Sometimes, if you can both bend a little, you will be able to find a happy middle ground that reduces stress levels for all involved.
Disconnect And Recharge After Work
When its time to step away from the office and go home, you should do exactly that. Emails and assignments can wait until tomorrow in almost every case. And if you expect to recharge your batteries, you need to stop using them for a few hours.
If you expect to recharge your batteries, you need to stop using them for a few hours.
But its not enough to just disconnect from work-related stress. Stress can show up in our personal lives as wellit just might be wearing a different mask. Like your aunt posting fiery political messages on social media or your friend complaining about their bad day. Engaging with these things isnt bad by itself, but if you jump from one kind of stress during your workday to another kind of stress at home, youre not giving yourself a chance to truly recover.
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Tip : Reduce Stress At Work By Taking Care Of Yourself
When stress at work affects your job performance, your private life, or your health, it is time to act. First, take care of your physical and emotional health. If you take care of your own needs, you will be stronger and more resilient to stress. The better you feel, the better equipped you will be to deal with work stress without being overwhelmed.
Taking care of yourself does not require a complete lifestyle overhaul. Even small things can lift your mood, boost your energy levels, and make you feel like you’re back in the driver’s seat. Go one step at a time, and if you make more positive lifestyle choices, you’ll soon notice a reduction in your stress levels, both at home and at work.
Why Employers Ask About How You Handle Stress
Interviewers want to make the best hire for each role. If they know that a certain role sometimes involves stressful situations, they may want to verify that a candidate can react to that environment in a constructive rather than destructive manner. Employers may not want to hire candidates who:
- Outwardly express stress in the form of anger or sadness
- Are reactive to stress in a disruptive way
- Allow stress to impede or degrade the quality of work
- Become overwhelmed or shut down as a result of stress
Put themselves and/or others in unnecessary and stressful situations
On the other hand, employees who understand their reaction to stress are an asset to hiring managers. They will appreciate a candidate who:
- Is motivated by healthy pressure and uses it to produce quality, efficient work
- Avoids stress by planning ahead and prioritizing work
- Keeps open lines of transparent, constructive communication with managers and colleagues
- Has healthy boundaries
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Ways Employers Can Manage Stress At Work
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Most of the stress we experience comes from our jobs and worksites. Stressed workers are more likely to smoke, drink, be inactive, eat poorly, have relationship issues, and get sick more often. All of this means decreased productivity. Thankfully, employers can help to manage stress at work.
Job stress costs billions of dollars every year because it leads to more absenteeism, medical expenses, and workers compensation claims.
Here is a comprehensive list of the main causes of worksite stress and a corresponding list of successful ways to help employers reduce stress in the worksite and help employees manage stress.
Worksites and wellness programs that have good control of stress at work have healthier, more productive employees. They also have lower health care costs.
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