We probably all know what it is like to feel stressed at work. In fact stress is now the biggest cause of workplace sickness in the UK, causing symptoms such as fatigue, IBS, headaches and even depression in the long term.
Next time you are feeling stressed at your desk, try these top tips instead of tearing your hair out:
1. Take a break and move – get away from your de
sk, turn off your phone and email and go for a walk at lunchtime. Getting some fresh air and some space away from the stressful environment or project can allow you to return feeling calmer and more able to deal with things. The added benefit to going for a walk is that you raise your endoprhins too, these are feel good chemicals that will lift your mood and reduce feelings of stress even further.
2. Eat for calm – when we feel stressed there is a tendency to reach for sugary carbohydrate laden foods such as biscuits and cake, and to wash this down with a nice cup of coffee. Unfortunately all these foods do is fuel the stress response in your body, leaving you feeling worse in the long run. Next time you are feeling stressed reach for some protein such as a chicken salad or a nut bar, which are much more likely to help you cope with the stress better.
3. Drink water – when we are stressed we become dehydrated, and when we are dehydrated we become stressed. It’s a vicious cycle that in the long term can lead to a ‘crash and burn’ scenario. The simple answer? Drink water. The more stressed you are, the more you need. Keep a bottle of water on your desk and sip throughout the day. Or make a nice soothing mug of warm water with lemon.
4. Learn to breathe – you are probably aware of meditation techniques that teach deep breathing. There is a good reason for that! Taking a slow deep breath floods your body with oxygen and calms down your heart rate and lowers feelings of stress. Next time you feel stressed at your desk, take a minute to close your eyes and do 3 or 4 deep breaths, and you’ll feel that stress start to melt away.
5. Get enough sleep – this isn’t really something you can do in the office! However, when we don’t have enough sleep it makes us more likely to become stressed, and less able to deal with existing stress. So, if you know you are going through a stressful time, aim for 8 hours sleep a night so that you can be as prepared as possible.
If you try these tips and you still can’t beat the stress, then it may be time to get some more help. Hypnotherapy can help you to reduce your stress levels as well as providing you with the tools to cope with any stress better in the future.