Causes of Workplace Stress
Workplace stress is necessary to some degree.
Mental pressure inspires us to push ourselves to higher levels of performance in work as well as in life, and we often feel stressed because we are preparing to do something that demands peak performance or holds the possibility of failure (and at the same time of great rewards).
Employees and employers nowadays are more productive than they've ever been before, and without some measure of pressure they would never have achieved such heights that benefit all of us.
Maintaining A Good Level Of Workplace Stress
However, too many of us are pushing too hard. So hard that we are harming our health by trying to climb the corporate ladder or earn that fat bonus check.
It is said that if you have your health, you have everything. Personal health
is more important than carrying so much work stress at the office that you sacrifice this, or your personal relationships, for the sake of work performance.
Indeed, the words "health" and "wealth" both have the same ancient root, and they both refer to wholeness.
So if you are stressing yourself so much that you are fragmenting your personal life, you are not doing the right thing, no matter how much more money or prestige you find it brings you.
A Man-Made Problem?
In traditional times men seemed, in general, more willing to take or keep high stress jobs.
Men in general term should be aware that they need to be vigilant about keeping themselves healthy by not biting off more stress than they can chew or by putting their careers ahead of those they care about.
Especially lawyers stress was a phenomenon already known to researchers of work related illnesses.
Women Are Catching Up
However, in the 21st century, heart attacks are heavily on the rise in women beyond the age of 40 even as they are falling off in the men of that same age.
This is due to the increased load of work stress with women that affirmative action and social movements have helped many women take on.
While some women thrive in that atmosphere, it is clear that the push to get more and more women into the work force or into high powered positions to prove a point or to make extra money is having serious and negative health consequences.
Keep Workplace Stress At Bay
Each economy is created in the sweat of the forehead and the taking on of workplace stress. However, anything can be overdone, and today people in productive orientated economies such as the American or Japanese are often working themselves to death or into divorce.
Being stressed out by work not only can harm your health or your personal life, but it's typically counterproductive.
Workplace stress overload can lead to lack of sleep or just lack of taking sufficient mental battery recharge breaks during the work day, and a tired mind just isn't able to focus like a rested one.
Without focus at work, what should take one hour can take two or three, or quality can be compromised.
Working extra hours means little compared to working smarter instead of harder so that you maximize quality.
Research has shown that in the first decade of the 21st century millions of people are working extra hours with little to show for it productivity-wise. They are paining themselves to please nobody, and many are personally suffering for it, too.
An employee, legally claiming stress compensation is a thing we see every time more. Often it is the end stage of a long battle for being confronted with years of work related stress without the possibility to improve the situation from within the company.
Get Your Life Into Balance
According to Dr. Roger Henderson, a stress expert:
"Requests for very late appointments because of work commitments are common, relationship conflicts due to lack of time together are on the increase and resentment at our working day 'polluting' the evening affects more and more patients.
It's imperative that as a society we rediscover ways to create a balance between work and home life."
The negative health consequences of too much workplace stress are many, and can include:
- Increased problems with chronic physical conditions
- Difficulty thinking clearly
- A constantly negative attitude
- Racing thoughts or a whirling mind
- "Weird" or morbid thoughts
- Constant anger and anxiety
- Decreased sex drive
- Apathy, discouragement, little joy
- An inability to forgive
- A "no one cares" attitude and even a sense of hopelessness.
To reduce workplace stress and get some needed stress relief, begin by leaving the office at the office. If nights and weekends are being constantly taken up by work, you need to consider if it's worth it.
You may need to change positions or careers to a low stress job, or perhaps you can find a way to telecommute and work from home (more and more the norm).
If you love your high stress job and can't or won't change it, then you have to focus intensely on getting the balance right that Dr. Henderson speaks of into your life.
Make up for lack of time with your loved ones with effective time management.
Make sure you eat right and are on a physical exercise program to enable you to handle the stress better and keep up your health.
Whenever you feel you need a short break, take it. Furthermore you can learn and transmit a lot about the topic, using stress management ppt presentations or alike.
And see if your office will hire or allow a workplace masseuse to come in once per week.
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