Thursday, August 28, 2014


As you know, stress effects us daily.  Job stress is different because we choose to go to work, usually because we have to, so we just get used to the personal demands of the job.  We expect it, anticipate it.  So sometimes it surprises us when we start having the ill effects of this daily grind.  It effects our health.  Our relationships.  Our overall happiness.  Here's a few more ways to control that stress.

6.  GET A LIFE OUTSIDE OF WORK. Our jobs often tend to  extend beyond the normal work hours.  In addition to taking work home, we can also think (or worry) about it when we're not there. Also (hopefully) taking time to recover from the exhaustion that's caused by a stressful job.  Our lives can tend to revolve around our work.  However, if our whole life is our job, and that job isn't very enjoyable, then our whole life isn't enjoyable.  Develop other interests.  Hang out with friends. Pay attention to your partner (date night?).  Go out with your family.  Exercise.  Then you have other things to think about, and to do.  Something to look forward to after work. This will help reduce your overall stress, including your work stress.

7.  LET A PICTURE MAKE YOU SMILE.  Either on your desk, or in your pocket (or in your phone), have a picture that's guaranteed to make you smile.  Baby pictures work well, or a pet, or a beautiful memory.  When your frustration is building at work, or disappointments are mounting up, take a look at the picture.  Let it make you feel good, as well as remind you of the REALLY important things in your life.

8.  DON'T BUY INTO THE NEGATIVITY OF OTHERS.  This is not always easy.  Especially if you are already stressed, not really happy at the time (for your own reasons).  You may readily engage in their negativity to help rationalize your distress.  Let toxic coworkers know not to bring you their drama, their complaints, their gossip.  It may be difficult at first to set boundaries for them, and you may lose them as work compadres (aka frienemies), but you'll be better off.

9.  STOP SEEING YOURSELF AS STUCK IN A "DEAD END" JOB.  Develop a different perspective of the job, and of yourself in the job. The way you characterize your job exists in your head.  You are in control of what goes on in there (though it may not feel like it sometimes).  If your job is getting you down, realize that you are allowing that to happen.  Take action.  Acknowledge it as the challenge that it is, then rise to meet the challenge.  Focus on the opportunities to be successful, and take pride in your ability to overcome obstacles even in the worst situations.  Even though you may not like the job, it's always better when you feel good about yourself.

10.  DON'T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF.  And there is so much "small stuff" that if you aren't careful, it will build up and wear you out. That's called BURNOUT.  So be mindful that the big things, for example a possible layoff, poor work evaluation, or an impending promotion, deserve your attention.  The small stuff may require a certain amount of work to resolve, but does not deserve your sweat, or worry, or stress.  So deal with it and forget it.  Move on.  You will do a better job, and you will feel better.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

10 Tricks To Help You Manage Job Stress

          I'm sure you're wondering, "why does he call these 'tricks'"?  Well, our bodies/mind/spirit are designed to be healthy and happy.  Stress can interfere with that.  We've pretty much been trained to accept stress, because it ain't going nowhere. Especially job stress.  So we end up tolerating much more stress than we should, which negatively impacts our bodies, minds, and spirits.   So these tricks will help you take control of the stress (since much of the work stress is not under your control) that is beating you down.

1. BREATHE! I love to say to people, 'check your breathing'.  You do it now.  Notice that you're not breathing deeply (as we were designed).  As a result, you can't relax; you get tired or bored or distracted because you're not getting enough oxygen to your brain; and you start to get crabby.  When you are at work take a deep breath (or several) throughout the day. It will immediately help counter the effects of stress. It'll be 'like a breath of fresh air!'

2.  REWARD YOURSELF FOR SURVIVING MONDAY.  Mondays are tough for everyone. So much so that we start stressing about it on Sunday. Plan an activity, special lunch or dinner, outing with a friend, a date, after work massage, favorite dessert, something guaranteed to make you feel GREAT.  It gives you something to look forward to as you suffer through the day. You deserve it.

3.  IDENTIFY THE BIGGEST PROBLEM AT YOUR JOB. Pick a favorite song or tune to have available in your head to use when you encounter that situation, or person. Hum the tune (probably best if you hum to yourself) when you need it.  Smile, and allow yourself to enjoy the moment.

4.   ACKNOWLEDGE THE GOOD REASONS THAT YOU STAY AT THIS JOB.  Remember, you're CHOOSING to stay. Likely because the income helps support your family; health benefits; someone's going to college; you like to go out once in a while; you like to shop. Don't focus on the negatives about the job. You'll feel better, less stressed. 

5.  THE WEEK AIN'T OVER ON FRIDAY.  Our lives too often revolve around the job.  Get a life outside of work, and indulge yourself in that from Friday evening to Sunday night.  Don't work on the weekend, even if you usually do work from home. Even though your job is important, it is only a PART of your life. If you lose your job you will get another one. If you were to lose your health, your family, your friends, or your fun you'd be very unhappy. Remember: All work and no play makes for a dull (and stressed out) life. 

                              ~ TO BE CONTINUED ~