More than 60% of workers in the United States say they feel stressed on three or more business days a week, according to a survey by Paychex. Most of them (73%) rate stress above level three on a scale of one to five.
And what causes stress? More than 80% of respondents stated that they are stressed at work because they are spending time in the office while they should stay at home, according to the survey. Still, 52% said they worked overtime and 47% said they worked on weekends.
After all, what is the solution to all this stress? In the article posted on the Forbes website, Kate Ashford separated ten suggestions from experts and workers.
- Pause for music
“When projects start to snowball and I panic without knowing where to start, I take a break and Spotify,” says Megan Frisina, 26, who lives in Cleveland, United States. “I put on my headphones and listen to a song or two, while having a cup of coffee or tea, avoiding a computer screen. After that, I’m ready to start.”
“Practicing mindfulness is a great way to relieve stress,” says Maura Thomas, founder of RegainYourTime.com and author of the book Personal Secrets of Productivity. “Buddhify is my favourite app. The benefits of mindfulness meditation practices can improve decision making such as relationships and increase creativity. Adding more break times throughout the day can help you feel calmer, more energized and less distracted.”
When was the last time you moved away from your desk? “Lunch gives you the energy you need to work in the afternoon,” says Jacqueline Lewis, founder of the Gratitude World Map. “If you use the right form, a lunch break can be a summary of an ideal day, a mix of pleasure, food and rest”, she says.
- Reinforce the limits
It’s easy to let work seep into your personal life with constant emails, messages and checks. If possible, stipulate that you do not call or email professionally from the time you arrive home until 8 am the next day, or you will not answer work calls during dinner with your family, recommends the American Psychological Association.
- Discover a hobby
“When I get stressed during the day, I play the piano,” says Gene Caballero, co-founder of GreenPal. “Playing an instrument makes all areas of the brain work simultaneously, so it restarts my mental capacity and helps me get through the day. It is like a mental exercise.”
- Movement is essential
“I started practising Tai Chi over 12 years ago and was addicted to spending time,” says Paige Arnof-Fenn, 51, who lives in Cambridge. “It’s a way to relax and stay focused. You can practice anywhere and no equipment is required. Tai Chi has improved my balance, a density of my bones, and helps me to keep my mind calm. Besides, I met great people.”
- Think of good things
“Make a daily gratitude list by writing ten things you like,” says Kimberly Hershenson. “Focusing on what is good in your life, instead of thinking about what is wrong at work, helps alleviate anxiety in the workplace.”
- Take a deep breath
“Deep breathing is the most powerful method you can integrate into your work routine,” says Michael Tamez, who writes about wellness. “By taking a deep breath, you breathe peace and tranquillity and exhale stress and anxiety.”
- Take a vacation
Do you know those holidays that are about to win? Taking a break throughout the year is important to your sanity. Try to take at least part of your vacation and disconnect work during this time.
- Rethinking the elements that generate stress.
Sometimes it all depends on how you think. Instead of focusing your attention on work-related aspects, think, “What can I do today?” Says Srini Pillay, CEO of NeuroBusiness Group. “This decreases the activation of the brain’s anxiety centre and increases the activity in the area that concentrates thoughts.”