Nine to five stress, and how to beat it

Nine to five stress, and how to beat it

Stress at work seems unavoidable, but there are ways to minimize it.

“Hard work never killed anyone.” Did you ever hear or read that?

Actually, it’s not true. With the stress-filled way we work today, with tight deadlines and pressure on every budget, with customers, clients and employers wanting more and more, it’s not surprising that work-related stress and anxiety levels in the 21st century workplace are so high. They’re linked to many health problems, some of which can be life-threatening.

Research shows that long working hours are associated with a higher risk of stroke, heart disease, and diabetes, as are bad habits like inactivity, smoking, and risky alcohol use.

But you needn’t work unusually long hours to suffer from stress, since so much of it occurs between 9 and 5.

Here are some tips on how to avoid it, and deal with it.

Be realistic about your workload and hours. Talk to your supervisor if your workload is exhausting. Suggest a solution, and talk it through, instead of steaming silently.

Don’t be afraid to speak to your company’s HR manager if you feel intimidated, ill-treated or bullied at work.

If you’re stressed because your position is insecure, be proactive and look around at other opportunities. Don’t be afraid to re-invent yourself – you’ll be surprised at how much you may enjoy the change.

Get off the sofa and get some balance. Make time after hours and on weekends for physical activity and fun. Do something that gets your pulse going for the right reason: walking, swimming, or dancing.

Have a daily switch-off period. Establish boundaries, which will make it easier for you to relax at home after hours. Don’t check work emails or accept work-related messages when it’s your switch-off time.

Socialise. Laughter really is great medicine, and spending time having fun with friends will do you good. Learn some relaxation techniques, like meditation, deep breathing or mindfulness.

Remember, stress is as much a threat to your health as physical factors. So if you need help, see a medical professional, and always accept help and support from trusted friends and family members.

Take care, be good to yourself, and let it go!

Did you find this article helpful? Share it with a friend or family member to make sure they’re also taking preventative steps to curb this disease.

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In the interest of our patients, in accordance with SA law and our commitment to expertise, MediHub cannot subscribe to the practice of online diagnosis. Please consult a medical professional for specific medical advice. If you have any major concerns, please see your doctor for an assessment. If you have any cause for concern, your GP will be able to direct you to the appropriate specialists.