If you experience stress in the workplace, you’re not alone. In fact, the American Psychological Association conducted a survey to find out just how serious the problem is, and they discovered that more than one-third of employees in the United States suffer from chronic stress on the job.
All this workplace stress not only costs Americans billions of dollars every year in medical bills and lost wages, but it also affects the quality of life of American workers, both in and out of the office. So, what can you do when your job is seriously stressing you out? Here are some smart, creative, and fun ways to manage job-related stress, relieve burnout, and take back your life!
Don’t Bring Your Work Home with You
The best way to maintain a balance between your work and home life is to keep them separate. When you’re at home, focus on enjoying your family and your downtime. When you’re at the office, focus on your work. So many people take work home with them. That means, after a day of stress at the office, they’re dealing with more stress when they get home… and they never stop focusing on work.
Once you get home, it’s time to let go of work-related thoughts. Have a nice dinner with your spouse, watch something funny on TV with the kids, take a walk, or listen to some calming music to help you wind down. These fun and relaxing activities will help you think of things that aren’t work-related, which is a great way to combat job-related stress.
Talk About It
Some experts say that you shouldn’t discuss work-related problems with your spouse, family, or friends because it may cause them to worry. However, talking to loved ones about issues you’re experiencing at work is a great way to unburden yourself, so that you can better cope with the stress and maybe even find a solution.
Sometimes, you just need to talk to someone you trust about what’s going on at work, the problems you’re facing, and get their input on how to handle the situation. Your loved ones know you better than anyone else, and they care about your well-being. Talking to them about work may help you feel better and find solutions that you haven’t thought of.
Plan Some “Me” Time
Is there a sport you love? How about a hobby? Are you a book or a movie lover? Whatever your interests and hobbies are, indulge them on your time off from work. Of course, you’ll want to do things with your family on your time off, too, but make time for your own interests as well.
Even a walk on the beach, or through a park, in the early morning or evening soaking up the fresh air can help to relieve stress. It’s a great way to combat burnout so you can feel fresh, renewed, and ready to get back at it when you return to work.
Get Away from It All
Sometimes, a change of scenery is exactly what you need to recharge your batteries and drop all that built up stress. Take a vacation at least once a year. Unplug and get away from it all with your spouse or family. Planning is part of the fun, so be sure your family gets in on choosing the destination and coming up with your itinerary.
Vacations are ideal for reenergizing, relaxing, and unwinding your mind and body so you can rejoin the rat race with a new frame of mind when you get home. It should go without saying, but don’t bring your work along with you!
Take Care of Yourself
Self-care is essential for both physical and mental health. Your body needs plenty of sleep, exercise, and good nutrition to combat stress. Did you know that exercise actually releases stress-relieving hormones? You don’t have to resolve yourself to hitting the gym either. Get your endorphins flowing with a fun activity instead, like dancing, kayaking, swimming, walking… whatever makes you happy!
Nourishing your body with proper nutrition is a great way to help it cope with work-related stress. Try to eat a whole food diet with lots of fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and healthy fats. “Sometimes, the body needs a boost of nutrition to recover from stress or illness,” says, Dr. Miriam Rahav from Rahav Wellness, whose clinic offers New Yorker’s IV drip services. “Much of our health and wellness depends on our inner balance of hydration, vitamins, and nutrients.”
It may be hard to escape work-related stress while you’re on the job, but there are lots of fun ways to manage it when you’re not at work. Try to come up with your own creative ways to deal with workplace stress. Just don’t let it take over your personal or professional life.