Let’s face it, none of us are immune from stress in our personal lives. Whether it’s relationships, house moves or raising children, we all suffer from some form of stress from time to time.
We all know how to deal with the normal stresses and strains of life. Most of us know that we are supposed to relax, meditate and take time for ourselves. Most people are aware of what they need to do to alleviate stress . Eat well, excercise, take ‘me time’ and if required take up therapy. Thankfully we now live in an age where therapy is no longer a dirty word.
What is probably not spoken about as much is how to deal with workplace stress. A recent survey found that 80% of women surveyed said they experienced workplace stress.
There are many reasons why women might experience more workplace stress than men. Women tend to take on more of the family and childcare duties than men. This is despite holding down full time jobs too. That will obviously have an effect on performance at work. Women also have to contend with stereotypes about women at work. The stereotype about women not performing as well as men, especially in male dominated industries. It would be unsurprising if women felt under more stress , wondering about whether they measures up or not.
Of course the irony is that stress can make you underperform, thus confirming the stereotype for many people.
So now we understand what workplace stress is and why women may suffer from it more than men. Now let’s look at the top 5 strategies for managing stress in the workplace.
Being organised can help keep you focused and on task. Make sure you are on top of your tasks or meetings. Set yourself reminders and make sure your colleagues are aware of your workload. There is nothing more stressful than having to juggle tasks but missing deadlines because you don’t know what’s next.
Making sure your coolleagues are up to speed also means they are less likely to overload you with work.
It might be tempting but try not to multitask. You can only truly give your all on a task if you are focusing on it instead of doing lots of other things at once.
Make a list in the morning of things you want to complete that day. Tick them off as the day progresses. Turn your email or phone notifications off so you can concentrate on that task. Timebox some time during the day or week for yourself, so you can work through your tasks.
Do not be afraid to delegate tasks to colleagues or other team members. Asking for help or delegating tasks is not a sign of weakness. You may think no one can complete the tasks as well as you do. Or you may worry that they can do the job better than you so you are afraid of being shown up.
Let go of those insecurities or fears. Try not to control so much. Such thinking can also increase stress and anxiety.
Maintain lines of communication with your line manager and other members of your team. You need to make sure you are aware of what is happening in the company. The last thing you want is to learn of major changes at the last minute. That is bound to make you more stressed than you already are.
Use the opportunity to let your manager know if you are feeling stressed. Maybe you feel your workload is getting out of control. Or that you want to have a discussion about your role.
Try and speak to other team members or trusted colleagues. If you are feeling stressed, speaking to someone that understands exactly what you are experiencing will help enormously.
Maintain WorkLife Balance
Maintaining a good work life balance is imperative for dealing with workplace stress. You need to work on creating clear lines between work and home. This means, where possible, not taking work home. Or working at home during time you normally spend with your family.
Eat well, sleep and get plenty of excercise. Spend time with family, work on hobbies, see friends and take some time for self care.
Its also important that you set expectations for your colleagues. They should be aware of when it is ok to call you out of work hours. Boundaries need to be set and maintained to ensure you keep that balance.
Hopefully these tips have helped. We would love to hear your stories. Drop us a line below!