If you’re feeling stressed out, whether its due to your job or by something else, the first thing to do to feel better is to find the cause.
The most counter productive thing you could do is turn to something unhealthy to help you cope, such as smoking, drinking or even eating.
“In life, there’s always a fix or solution to any problem,” says Professor Maxwell, an occupational health expert at the University of Ohio. “Not taking control of the issue and doing nothing about it will only make the problem worse.”
He goes on to say that, the keys to good stress management are building emotional fortitude, having a good social circle and adopting a positive outlook on life.
What you can do to address your stress
These are Professor Maxwell’s five stress-busting solutions:
Exercise won’t make your stress vanish, but it will decrease some of the emotion that you’re feeling, cleansing your thoughts and allowing you to deal with your problems more calmly.
Take control of the situation
There’s a fix to any problem. “If you remain passive and don’t do anything to fix the problem your stress will get worse,” says Professor Maxwell. “The feeling of losing control is one of the main causes of stress and lack of good health.”
The act of taking back control is in itself empowering and motivating, and it’s a crucial part of finding a fix that satisfies you and not someone else.
Connect with good people
A good social support circle of work colleagues, friends and family can easily ease your work troubles and help you see things in a different way.
“If you don’t connect with people, you won’t have support to turn to when you need help, which is very important in order to working towards getting better” says Professor Maxwell.
The activities we do with our friends will help us to relax and calm down. We often have a good laugh with them, which is an excellent stress reducer.
“Talking about your issues with a friend will also help you find solutions to your problems,” says Professor Maxwell.
Have me time
We work the longest hours, meaning we often don’t spend enough time doing things we really like doing.
“We all need to take some time for socialising, fun, relaxation or keeping in shape,” says Professor Maxwell.
He recommends setting aside a couple of days a week for some quality “me time” away from work, which could be adding to stress. “By keeping those two days, it means you won’t accidentally work overtime,” he goes on to say.
Challenge yourself more
Setting yourself goals and challenges, whether at work or outside, such as learning a new language or a new sport, helps to build confidence. This will help you deal with stress.
“By continuing to learn more, you become more resilient as a person,” says Professor Maxwell. “It equips you with knowledge and makes you want to do things rather than be passive and sit back.”