Article: Stressed at work? Are you longing for more peace and serenity?
The workplace is a place where employed people spend a major part of their day. Over the last few years, with the many lay offs in almost every industry, many employees have found themselves working longer hours and doing the work of at least 2 or 3 other people. This becomes quite stressful day in and day out.
With others in the same “boat”, the environment can become quite toxic with tension, snide competitive remarks, conflicts among co-workers, as well as excess demands from managers and/or other high level executives. People start feeling like they are in a pressure cooker.
This is costly to both the employee and eventually the business.
Here are some ways work stress can affect the health of the worker and the well being of the business:
- Increase in blood pressure.
- Increase in heart rate
- Immunity decreases, susceptibility to colds and flus increases
- Mood and attitude of employees takes a nose dive
- Motivation for projects/work decreases
- Productivity decreases
- Management loses its support structure
So, what can you do? Are you destined to feeling stressed out day in and day out, increasing your health risks, or is there another approach that might work better, other than leaving your job?
The serenity prayer of Alcoholics Anonymous says that the key to serenity is accepting what you cannot change, changing what you can, and possessing the wisdom to know the difference. The prayer is a good model that covers a lot of ground, but how do you tell the difference between what you can and cannot change?
Here are some things you do have control over.
By focusing your attention on these, you can bring more peace and serenity into your everyday work experience.
Your actions/Your behaviors: You can choose actions and behaviors that support your integrity. No one can “make” you do anything. You either allow it or you don’t. Create healthy boundaries If you’re unhappy with your behavior at work or at home, change it, make amends if necessary, chart a new course.
Your words: Spoken or written, the words you choose impact your life and the lives of others. Choose your words carefully with workmates, colleagues, bosses, and clients, and quickly acknowledge any harm.
Your beliefs: If you believe that others should take care of your needs, then you will be frustrated when they don’t. If you believe things must be a certain way, you’ll surely face disappointment.
Your values: What’s important to you is your choice. No one else should tell you what to value. Spend some time clarifying your values and then aligning your work and life with them.
Your work: No one else can contribute to the world in the same way as you. Do whatever it takes to find your work.
Your friends:Those you associate with say a lot about what you think about yourself. You can choose friends who support you or those who bring you down.
Your input: You can select your sources of news and entertainment. If you feel adversely affected, turn off the computer, the TV, and/or ignore advertising. Fill downtime from work with other activities, such as leisurely walks, gardening (weeding can be especially helpful in managing anxiety), and cooking or other creative pursuits.
Your time: Though it may not always feel this way, you do choose every day how to use its 24 hours. Fill those hours with more of what you truly want, and watch your contentment rise.
Your basic health: While you can’t control your genetic make-up, you can choose to exercise, sleep enough, eat healthy food, and utilize health care providers to support your well being. While you’re at it, don’t forget your mental health. Treat yourself a with kindness and compassion, and cultivate trust in the Universe that things will work out for you. If you need professional help don’t let pride stop you from asking.
Your legacy: All that you choose while alive-your actions and words-will become the gift you leave when you die. What will be your legacy?
If you would like support in focusing in on any of the above areas and/or getting the stress relief you desire, don’t waste any more time feeling overworked, stressed and less than your best.
Part of this article is licensed by Claire Communications