1) First off, take a deep breath. What is it that is so upsetting to you? Is it the job itself, an annoying coworker, difficult manager or a particular project? When workplace stress gets to be too much, it’s time to take a step back and reevaluate your reactions, response, environment and coping mechanisms.
2) Categorize the cause of your stress into one of two buckets:
a) Things you can control – this is where your focus should be
b) Things you can’t – this is where you need to let go
3) Devise an action plan based on where the stress is coming from
If it’s project based – can you ask your manager or a trusted coworker for help? If that’s not a possibility, try to start the day with tasks that you do enjoy. Then, you can dive into the project.
If it’s a problem with another person, team or even your boss, you’re going to have to tread lightly. Make an effort to minimize time spent with the other person. Not an option? Then, you’re going to have to change your mindset and approach when interacting with them. This Forbes article on dealing with difficult people gives additional advice on handling stress inducing coworkers.
If it’s the job itself, it’s time for the tough questions. Are you in the right position, at the right company, or even in the right field? These are deeper issues that aren’t going to be so quickly resolved. In that case, it may be time to revise your resume. Surprisingly enough, this act alone can make you feel better, giving you control where you may have previously felt powerless.
4) Add stress management into your day. Don’t dismiss the importance of proper nutrition, exercise, sleep and overall self care. Super stressed people often put their physical and emotional needs on the back burner. However, this is when you need to take care of yourself more than ever. Fit in a walk, call a friend/family member/trusted colleague to vent to (but limit this to a set period of time), plan something fun outside of work to look forward to, watch a funny TV show to divert your attention, etc. The goal here is to step away from what’s upsetting you and focus on the positives in your life. We get that this is not always easy.
Clearly, dealing with stressful people, situations and projects at work can be a challenge. However, there is hope! It does take time, but with awareness, commitment and a plan, you will start to feel better.
How do you handle stress at work? We would love to know! Comment below and share this post if you found it helpful.
Here’s to stress free days 🙂
Oldcastle is North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials. With more than 2,000 locations throughout North America, we are in constant pursuit of the next generation of successful decision makers, leaders and problem solvers. Learn more about joining the Oldcastle team HERE.
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