5 Psychological Exercises to Relieve Stress at Work
Everyone feels stressed from time to time, however, some people cope with stress quicker and more effectively than others. Stress is defined as any situation where a person’s body and brain respond to any demand or situation. A stressor, or the cause of a person’s stress, may be a short-term occurrence or it can haunt a person over long periods of time.
A person experiencing prolonged stress might end up with various health related problems. Some medical issues that can be stress related are heart problems, brain tumors, strokes and serious and traumatic mental breakdowns. Without necessary attention, stress can bring about conditions such as muscle tension, sleep disorders, hypertension and compromised or debilitated immune systems. Research has shown that anxiety can add to the advancement of existing illnesses such as coronary diseases, depression and weight fluctuations.
Stress is a big deal, yet, a large portion of the complications caused by stress can be easily relieved. Sometimes people become too complacent and simply wallow in the misery and distress of their current situation rather than dealing with issues and making positive changes. This only increases their stress and interferes with their day to day lives.
Other people choose to seek out positive ways to deal with stressors that they cannot easily remove from their lives by participating in contemplation and exercise such as yoga or walking. Exercise has been shown to greatly reduce stress and decrease your chances of developing a debilitating illness because of it.
Some people don’t realize however that not all stress is bad. Some stress can actually improve your effectiveness and performance on things like an interview or a test, or when receiving news, you may have been waiting for such as a job promotion.
What is perceived as both good and bad stress varies greatly from one individual to the next. Some things that cause a certain person discomfort or causes great harm to their well-being can be seen as ordinary or everyday occurrences to others. But no matter what the case, we all feel stress and the effects of it can be very real.
Here is a short list of some of the most common stressors that people experience,
- Stress related to a daily routine such as work, school, family and other daily tasks.
- Stress brought by a sudden negative life change such as losing someone, getting fired from a job, divorce or personal illness.
- Traumatic stress is experienced due to major, unexpected life events such as accidents, wars, assault or natural disasters like earthquakes, storms or flooding.
Luckily researchers have discovered many stress relieving activities that can be carried out even while you’re at work, without breaking from what you have to get done.
- Always take a small break when it is too much: If you have ever started thinking about how you had fun with your friends last summer while right in the middle of a big project, that’s your mind forcing you to take a break without even leaving your worksite. It’s often hard to leave work half done and go on a real break, but just the memory of a happy or relaxing time can be all the break you need to avoid stress and give your mind a little break.
- Exercise often: If possible, set aside about 20 minutes a day to exercise to relieve stress. Prolonged muscle tension can lead to a chronic form of muscle tension causing all kinds of problems down the road. Using a stress ball can also be very helpful in relieving stress and tension at work without taking your attention away from the task at hand.
- Laugh often: A considerable measure of how we are feeling is a direct result of the look on our face. It’s hard to stay stressed if you’re laughing or smiling. At the very least, putting some thank you quotes on your desk to yourself in appreciation of the work you are doing, will help to give you those good feelings and keep you free from harmful stress. When we laugh, our brain releases more endorphins than usual. Endorphins make us happy and make us feel good and relaxed. Laughing can change your mood in an instant and calm a stressed-out mind.
- Breathe Deeply: Breathing is an automatic bodily function so it’s importance in reducing stress is often overlooked. Deep breathing raises the amount of oxygen in the brain and naturally enhances calm.
- Reach Out: Believe it or not, our social network is one of our best tools for dealing with stress. Conversation with people face to face is a great stress reliever and even a conversation on the phone can be beneficial. Conversation can offer you a crisp point of view while keeping your association with your friends, acquaintances, family members or associates, solid.
Anyone that has ever had a job has felt the pressure of work-related stress at one time or another. Any job can have stressful elements even if you love what you do. However, when necessary steps are taken to manage that stress, it doesn’t have to become a threat to both our physical and emotional well-being.
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