Six Ways to Combat Stress on the Job

April 29, 2013

ID-100128285(1)A burned out employee can lead to huge productively problems. Signs of burnout include anxiousness, noticeable tiredness, inability to focus and a short temper. Obviously, none of these are conducive to a positive, strong work environment. So, to help you avoid becoming burned out, here are six tips for employees and employers alike from your friends at Dale Carnegie Training of Central Indiana:

For Employers:

Allow Regular Breaks — Mental health is becoming increasingly important in the workplace, and more and more employers are recognizing the need for their employees to take frequent breaks to keep their minds sharp. Allow your employees a 15-minute break in the morning, a 30-60 minute lunch break (that we recommend they take outside of the office) and an additional 15-minute break before the end of the day. You’ll find your employees to be better rested and more focused on their responsibilities.

Provide a Unique Break Room — Conventional break rooms tend to be pretty drab with the usual coffee machine, water cooler, and the occasional microwave. Some companies have started to stray from this, however, and transformed break rooms into brief escapes from work. Some ideas include setting up televisions, game tables and video game systems in their break rooms. Creating an environment for employees to briefly escape to for a reasonable amount of time will go a long way to combating stress and preventing job burnout.

For Employees:

Set Aside Personal Time Outside Of Work — Being a dedicated employee is admirable, but being indentured to your business will wear you down over time. When work is your life, your life is work, and burnout becomes inevitable. Know when to walk away from work. Schedule regular time away from work each week, preferably dedicated to a personal passion or hobby that clears your mind of any lingering business distractions. Fishing, gym workouts, and yard maintenance are just a few of the ways people center themselves outside of work.

Don’t Overwork Yourself — Many people find it difficult to say “no” in the workplace. This typically leads to the accumulation of more and more workload each time they agree to lend a hand here or there, or take on a side project or something similar. Being a team player is important in the business world, but if you aren’t careful other employees will take advantage of your generous, helping nature and all you’ll get in return is stress from being overworked.

Develop a Life/Work Balance — Work cannot be the all-encompassing focus of your life, especially if you hope to maintain a happy home life. Whether you live by yourself, with a significant other, or with a whole family—kids and all—you need to manage your time between work and home effectively. When it’s time to leave the job, leave it! Go home to your family. Go to the movies with your partner or friends. Give your personal life just as much time and attention as you do your work life. If you don’t, you’ll start to see problems and frustrations develop outside of work that will affect your work life and cause you to feel burned out.

Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle — The importance of a healthy lifestyle can’t be overstated. The benefits of diet, exercise, and proper sleep drastically affect our behavior both in and out of work. All it takes is setting aside 30-40 minutes just three days a week to exercise and make a greater effort to manage your diet. Doing so will benefit you directly in ways innumerable, and a positive lifestyle will lead to a more positive work experience.

Job burnout is a critical issue in today’s fast-paced, demanding, work-intensive business world. Preventative measures like the ones outlined above will help minimize the threat.

This post is brought to you by the good folks at Dale Carnegie Training of Central Indiana, providers of professional development and management development courses and information in Indiana. We would love to connect with you on Facebook.

Photo credit: Marcol

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