How to reduce stress in your workplace
Surely everyone in a busy job has stress to deal with each day – right? So, is managing stress in the workplace really such a big deal? &Health professionals tell us that a small amount of stress is normal at work – it is the body’s natural adrenaline giving you the push to sort out problems when they arise. For a few minutes, every now and again it is good for you to be in fight or flight mode – it helps you to quickly think of a solution to a pressing problem.&
However, serious problems with stress arise when you work in an environment when you are constantly in fight or flight mode. This can cause you to suffer burnout and depression and other serious health issues. In the U.K., this is happening more often than you’d think. In the UK in 2015-16 stress accounted for 37% of all work related ill health cases and a massive 45% of all working days lost to ill health. &So, managing stress at work is a big issue; employers should take it seriously, if they want a productive workforce. & Research shows you might experience high levels of stress when: &
- You are overloaded with work and you do not properly manage your time to allow for breaks
- You feel there is an expectation to work long hours without breaks.
- You do not feel you have control over how you carry out your duties
- You do not feel you receive support from your managers
- You do not feel your role in the organisation is well defined or respected
- You work with people you feel bullied by or those you do not trust
Harvard public health professors, Christopher Murray and Alan Lopez, have revealed that by 2020, depression will rank second only to heart disease as the leading cause of disability world-wide. So, following this sobering thought we thought we’d put together some advice to help you be happier, healthier, and ultimately more productive at work:
12 WAYS TO REDUCE STRESS IN YOUR OFFICE:
- As an employer, model healthy working practice – take lunch breaks and your full holiday entitlement to show that you take the problem of stress seriously and that you want to prevent it in your work place.
- Prevent exhaustion by knowing how much work you can take on. Be confident enough to say ‘no’, when you feel you are pushed too far. By taking on too much, you could end up doing nothing well.
- If you are an employer, allow workers to be flexible and work remotely on some days if they need to. &Letting them manage their own time makes them feel trusted and valued and research shows, it also makes them more productive.
- If you are the boss, make sure your managers are well trained about stress-related illness and teach them to look for warning signs amongst staff as well as providing advice and support to alleviate the stress.
- If you are feeling stressed at work due to your workload or your personal life, speak to your manager or someone in your organisation that you feel comfortable talking to. They could offer emotional or practical support to help take the pressure off you and help you feel more in control again.
- &As an employer, make sure your office has lots of healthy snacks and drinks available; buy fresh fruit, herbal teas and make sure there’s a chilled water dispenser. &Caffeine overload can make hearts race and increase stress rates and junk food leads to sugar crashes and low moods.
- If you have a heavy workload – take control of your own schedule by using time management software that maps in essential time to relax – try Harvest www.getharvest.com/, Toggl https://toggl.com/ and TimeCamp https://www.timecamp.com/
- &Organise your work environment in a way that makes you happy and include some greenery and inspiring art to you relax and boost your creativity.
- Employers should get some personal resilience training for their staff to help them become more assertive, bounce back from failure and understand that sometimes failure is inevitable. &
- As an employer make your employees feel valued and included in the running of the company – have open lines of communication with them.
- Organise social events with people at work – this helps to build valuable friendships and trust with other workers which can really help you when you have stress at work or at home.
- If you are the boss, take occasions to spontaneously reward your staff with a meal out or a well-being day. &Spontaneous rewards are proven to make employees feel happier and more valued than they feel when rewards are given for achieving targets. &
At Clarendon, our serviced offices, not only give your business a great profile by being in key locations but we can also help take the pressure off you; our reception teams greet your clients and visitors in a professional way and we take care of all the niggly things – repairs, maintenance and telecommunications, helping to reduce your stress levels so that you become more productive.&