How to Reduce Work Stress [And Why It Matters]

Work stress has become so prevalent that it’s now a norm to think of work as stressful. The effect of work stress can be so detrimental in our lives that it doesn’t just cause problems in our professional lives but also with our personal and family lives.

While stress at work can be unavoidable, there are different ways on how you can reduce or handle stress. It’s important for stress to be addressed because if not, work stress can cause mild to severe health problems. 

Harvard and Stanford researchers even found that stressful jobs can lower one’s life expectancy. Moreover, a decline in productivity and performance is also a common consequence of being too stressed out. 

According to OSHA (The Occupational Safety and Health Administration), the cost of stress is at $190 billion a year in annual healthcare bills. If you are feeling stressed or if you know someone who is stressed at work, here are some ways on how you can reduce work stress.

Start Your Day with Gratitude

A lot of times, people see more about what they don’t have than what they do have. People form a habit of thinking about their struggles and their problems than their accomplishments. This bad habit can be hard to break.

If a person is overwhelmed by work stress, the day-to-day negative emotions can help form bad habits of dwelling unto negative thoughts and emotions. 

Starting your day with gratitude allows you to program your mind to be positive. You can be grateful for even the simplest of things; your family, your friends, your pet, your health, your eyes that can see the beauty of the world, etc.

Tony Robbins mentioned that the mind can just focus on one thing. “You can’t be fearful and grateful simultaneously.” Tony Robbins also said, “when you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears.”

A lot of people say that they are grateful but they don’t take time to be grateful. Practice being grateful everyday and it will help you become more positive in life. According to The New York Times, here are some of the benefits of being grateful:

  • Better immune system
  • Lower blood pressure
  • Lower chance of heart disease
  • Better weight control
  • Healthier blood sugar levels

You can combat work stress with gratitude. Being grateful is life-changing but don’t take our word for it. Try it out for yourself. Reduce work stress with gratefulness.

Get Enough Rest and Sleep

We all know the importance of having enough rest and sleep. However, because of having too much to do, a lot of people sacrifice sleep to do more of something else. Depriving yourself of sleep will make you more vulnerable to stress.

According to Harvard Medical School, sleep deprivation can affect your mental health. Sleep is when our body regenerates and repairs itself. If you have insufficient sleep, you’ll have a harder time coping up with stress.

According to Healthline, these are the effects of sleep deprivation:

  1. Memory issues
  2. Problem with thinking and concentration
  3. Mood changes
  4. Becoming more prone to accidents
  5. Weaker immune system
  6. High blood pressure
  7. Risk for diabetes
  8. Weight gain
  9. Low sex drive
  10. Risk of cardiovascular disease
  11. Poor balance

People believe they can get more things done by sacrificing sleep. However, with insufficient rest, focus and creativity becomes poor. Sometimes, resting can be the most productive activity you can do.

Here are the benefits of having adequate sleep according to Dreams:

  1. Sleep helps reduce stress
  2. Can improve memory
  3. Can lower blood pressure
  4. Boosts immune system
  5. Helps regulate weight
  6. Adequate sleep puts you in a better mood
  7. Helps your heart stay healthy
  8. Helps improve cognitive function

Manage your time well and strive to get enough sleep. If there’s anything you need to do less, reduce your time on activities that have low to no consequences like going through social media. 

Form Positive Relationships

While work can be the stressor at your job, your strong relationship with your coworkers can help reduce work stress. Just talking about what stresses you out can help reduce it. According to WebMD, talking about your problems can help reduce stress.

Even if the listener can’t help you with your troubles, just verbalizing the cause of your stress can help reduce or clear it up. Not to mention that great relationships at work can be a source of happiness.

Friendship helps get your mind off of negative thoughts. More than helping to reduce work stress, here are other benefits of friendship in the workplace according to Flipping Heck:

  • They help motivate you
  • Improves job satisfaction
  • Improves teamwork
  • Helps foster positive work culture
  • Helps improve productivity
  • Improves employee retention rate

If you have friends at your workplace, try to be more open about your problems. Even if they can’t help you, just sharing about your problems can help reduce your stress.

These are but a few ways on how you can reduce work stress. With whatever you do, don’t keep on holding on to negative thoughts. As what Terri Guillemets said, “give your stress wings and let it fly away.”