Don’t reach for the chocolate or start shouting and bawling…
We’re all prone to getting stressed at work – it’s kind of the point. If you don’t get stressed, then there’s probably something wrong – maybe you’re not working hard enough or maybe you’re just balling up all the tension inside you. Both these possibilities will end badly. Basically, it’s completely normal to be stressed at work, but remembering this does very little in the moment; only in hindsight, when we’ve calmed down, do we really see the pointlessness of getting incredibly wound up about our jobs.
But how can you get to that point faster, to move on from all that tension and get back to working at your composed best as soon as possible? Obviously different things work for different people, but here are a few more innovative ways to get around the obstacles of office stress…
No, we don’t mean stuff your face with chocolate (although the occasional binge is acceptable on the most extreme days) – we mean make sure you’re eating right. A bad diet will lead to bad ways of thinking, and worse still, headaches, the ultimate cause and consequence of office stress. If you’ve had a stressful morning, be sure to pick up a healthy lunch with plenty of vitamins; fruit, juice, you know the score. And if you really, really need a treat, a bit of cake would be welcome too.
Though we know you clearly have the best music taste in the office, not everyone else agrees. This means that when you’re stressed, the last thing you want to hear is your boss blaring out Girls Aloud. But that’s a problem easily solved; there are magical things called earphones, which if you’re allowed, should be with you at all times. Though taste differ wildly, music is universal in that it improves our mood. In fact, it’s been scientifically proven that listening to music with associate with negative emotions actually helps us work out those emotions. So crank up that emo and cheer up.
Ok so not everyone loves pumping iron or marathon running but we’re not talking about excessive exercise here. Getting out of the office for half an hour for a walk can drastically reduce your stress levels and has the added bonus of also getting fresh air into your lungs! If your workplace is one that expects people to work through lunch at their desks, then perhaps don’t make a habit of disappearing at lunch times. However working for a company that expects this could be a major contributor to your stress levels.
Yes, you read that right; next to music, nothing will pick you up quite like a dedicated meditate, provided you can find the time and space. Ideally, you’ll want about 15 minutes to sit (not necessarily cross-legged in yoga pants) with your eyes shut and the world shut out. After that, any headaches should be gone, you’ll be feeling tranquil and level-headed, refreshed and ready to take on the next challenge.
Yes, you read that right too! If meditation isn’t enough (though some studies suggest it can be more restorative than sleep), a power-nap could be the way to go. Though your requests for naps are much less likely to be met by your boss than your requests for meditation, it should be pointed out that the ideal power-nap should take no more than 20 minutes. Anything more than that will probably be counter-productive, leaving you feeling groggy and like you’ve wasted your time.
We can’t promise that these solutions will put an end to your office stress forever, but it’s certainly a start, and a better alternative than taking it out on your friends… or your diet. If you’ve got any great tips for beating office stress, share them in the comments section below!
Author: Josh Booth is a senior content writer for BahGum.com. Hailing from Leeds and living in York, he’s a Yorkshireman to the core, and passionate about helping his home county thrive.