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Whatever your line of work, the chances are that you’ll have working days that are stressful. Whether they involve looming deadlines, seemingly endless to-do lists, or a difficult co-worker, you’re bound to have the odd ‘off day’. However, if you find yourself feeling stressed out and overwhelmed for longer than usual, it’s important that you speak up and seek help because stress can have a major impact on your physical and mental health.
To celebrate 20 years of YourGP, we asked Dr V. McBride to share her top 20 ways to manage stress in the workplace. Many people’s working lives have changed dramatically in the past 20 years, but these top tips could make all the difference to the way you feel at work…
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by your to-do list, write it in order of priority and focus on one task at a time.
If there is just no way you’ll be able to complete a task on time, it’s best to speak up and work towards a more realistic goal than try to rush a job under stress.
Write yourself reminders, set yourself alarms and banish distractions such as mobile phones if you need to complete a task by a certain time.
It can sometimes be tempting to keep working until a task is complete, but before you know it hours have whizzed by and you’ve barely looked up from your computer. Remember to take the breaks you are entitled to.
Focus on simply inhaling and exhaling to stop your mind from racing and to bring your focus back to the task at hand.
Keep your desk tidy and your workspace clutter-free. File important documents immediately and have a regular clear-out to keep on top of things.
Pass control of particular tasks to others to help free up your time if you simply can’t fit it all in.
If you need help, ask for it.
Juggling too much all at once is when things become overwhelming. Focus on one thing at a time.
Exercise can be a great stress reliever, so walk or cycle to work, enjoy a stroll on your lunch break, or head straight to the gym after work.
Be mindful of your screentime and enjoy lunch breaks in another part of the office if possible to clear your head.
So often, people get hung up on the minor details of what they did wrong, as opposed to the many things they did right. Try to see things from a more positive perspective.
Whilst working hours can take up a substantial part of your day, remember that your job is not your whole life. Focus on your friends, family, experiences and achievements outside of work.
While there’s nothing wrong with checking the odd email out of hours, or responding to a one-off urgent request, it is important to set clear boundaries between your work life and personal time.
It can be tempting to opt for convenience foods and energy drinks to fuel your working day, but you’ll feel much better in the long-run if you make an effort to prepare healthy salads and soups and snack on nuts and fruit instead.
Whilst a record of 100% attendance may sound impressive, it is important to recognise that people do get sick. It is best to take a day off to look after yourself than to let health issues worsen simply because you feel a need to be seen in the office.
Whether you’re cooking a special dinner at the weekend or heading off on holiday, remember that you’ve worked hard and earned your time off, so enjoy it!
Whether it’s adding personal items to your desk or compiling an upbeat playlist to listen to on your commute, add a little joy to your work routine.
Be supportive of others and look out for any warning signs of stress amongst your co-workers.
If something doesn’t sit right with you, report it ASAP.
YourGP provides comprehensive occupational health services to help employers across a wide range of sectors lead happy and fulfilling working lives. We can provide an onsite GP clinic, allowing your staff to be seen quickly and conveniently for any health concerns they may have – including stress and mental health issues.
To find out more about our bespoke healthcare packages, call 0131 381 0322 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a consultation with one of our team.
I needed a quick appointment as I was leaving for America. The doctor listened and allayed any concerns. It was a pleasure to talk to a doctor who wasn’t watching the clock and not paying attention to me. I left confident that if a problem arose I would be able to deal with it until I arrived home. The experience left me feeling confident and positive.