No matter what your career, all jobs have a certain amount of stress and it’s what you do with that stress that matters. Staff is a critical element to a healthy brand. Should the company owner and staff be stressed out, how might others talk about the business? What reputation might manifest?
The first thing is to figure out what is causing you stress. Getting to the root of the issue is often the best way to come up with a solution to solve the problem.
With technology has come many ways to save time, but it has also led to many of us having to constantly be reachable in ways that we may not have been before. Phone calls, texts, emails. It seems like it never ends.
1. Organize your inbox – It can be quite overwhelming when you have an inbox of e-mails to get through the moment you sit at your desk. Depending on your e-mail set up there can be some ways to curb the never-ending mass of e-mails that can cause even the most organized person anxiety. If you use Gmail, something like Sortd can help bring some Zen into your inbox. Looking at the “big picture” in terms of e-mails can cause anxiety but having everything organized into tasks or levels of importance can help bring calm and clarity to the situation.
2. Find a private space – Not only is having a ton of people reaching out to you virtually via text, phone and e-mail enough to send you into a tailspin but having people walk by your desk, chit-chatting next to your desk or constantly vying for your attention is another way to create a sense of anxiousness when you are not able to complete tasks that have deadlines or require your full attention. If you can, move yourself to another space for a while. Have laptop will travel! If you can work in another office down the hall away from the rest of your co-workers, or an unused boardroom where you can draw the blinds, even for a short while, it can help you get your mind back to your work and away from your distractions for a while allowing you to get more work done, which can bring a sense of calm.
3. Set times to check your e–mails – Do you feel the need to respond to e-mails right away as you see them popping up from your taskbar? Try closing your e-mail client and setting certain times of the day where you will check your e-mails and respond to them, or at least flag them in order of importance to respond to them as needed. You will find this less of a distraction, allowing more work to get accomplished.
4. Take a break – This is IMPORTANT. Got lots to get done? Taking a break does not have to mean a one-hour lunch. Even just a few minutes away from your desk can allow you to refocus yourself, relax your eyes, and stretch. Walk outside for 10 minutes, walk down the hallway, or get a glass of water. Leave your cell phone at your desk, and just take a few minutes for YOU.
5. Tackle the tiger – Are you one of those people who leave the tough stuff for the end? Often those tough tasks can weigh heavily on you throughout the day. Getting through the tough stuff first thing in the day can bring a sense of accomplishment and allow for a better flow in the rest of your day.
6. Play a quick game – Did I say that? Yes! All work and no play can lead to a miserable day! There is nothing wrong with changing your focus to something else for a few minutes (providing the boss is ok with it). Try playing a quick game of solitaire.
7. Make your workspace a great place – Take a look at your workspace. Is it dull and boring? Nothing but paper and staplers? If this is your own workspace, why not add something that brings you joy? Maybe a small plant, a picture of the beach or the woods or a loved one.
8. Listen to music – The right kind of music can help relax you and help keep you from distractions. Try to choose something that is ambient, calming, and has no vocals.
9. Have coffee with a friend – Sometimes even being able to share things that are going on in your day, or listening to someone else share about their day, can take your focus away from your work for a while.
10. Snack on something – If you are busy and find it hard to take time for a full lunch away from your desk, try snacking while you work. This can help from being distracted about being hungry and help with blood sugar levels, so you are not feeling the afternoon slump.
Working from home does not make your work any less stressful either. If you work from home often, either because your company allows you to or because you have your own business, destressing is just as important, and maybe even more so. Make sure you take time out to do one of the items listed or even take your dog for a walk around the block just to break up your day a little. Rover will thank you for it too!