Stress in the workplace is an issue that most businesses recognise as an important topic when it comes to the mental health and wellbeing of staff.
We’ve looked at some of the ways individuals can beat stress in the workplace and how organisations can use stress risk assessments and mental health days to support staff and reduce the stigma surrounding mental health issues.
Since we’re half-way through National Stress Awareness Month, which happens every April, we thought we’d take another look at how you can help to reduce stress.
According to staff absence statistics from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), work-related stress accounts for 57% of days lost to ill health.
A survey by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) also found that nearly two-fifths (37%) of respondents reported an increase in stress-related absence over the past year.
It also found that stress was among the top three causes of short and long-term absence, as well as the primary cause of long-term absence in over a fifth of organisations.
With this in mind, here are our 8 steps to reducing stress:
Make sure that you give yourself time away from your day job.
Find the activity that releases those stressful feelings and do them regularly. They’ll be different for everyone, whether it’s reading a book, going for a run, watching a movie or socialising with friends, give yourself some “me time”.
Issues at work can become even more stressful when you dwell on them.
If something happens that makes you feel tense, try to deal with it when it happens rather than letting things build up.
If you address it in a kind and friendly manner, most people will respond in the same way.
But what is mindfulness? It’s basically the practice of being consciously aware in the present moment, without judging your experience.
It’s a meditation-like practice that allows you to calm your mind and focus solely on the here and now. You can find out more about why mindfulness matters in The Art of Mindfulness.
Everyone has their own way of relaxing, whether it’s reading, walking, painting, exercising or anything else.
Find yours and try to do it for at least an hour a day, for at least one day per week, and for at least 1 week every 3 months. Just make sure it’s not an unhealthy habit like overeating or smoking.
It’s important for both employers and employees to be approachable and friendly.
Everyone would like to think that someone would come to them if they had an issue. Listen to others and they’ll be more likely to listen to you when you are feeling stressed.
Put things in perspective and list the things that worry you, then try to resolve the ones that cause you the most stress.
It’s only natural to avoid things that you don’t like, but be brave and resolve the worries as soon as you can so that you can move on to the other worries on your list.
Stress can cause you to be self-critical, so don’t confuse self-care with selfishness.
Don’t criticise yourself for feeling anxious. By focusing on yourself, you can improve your mental health.
It can be easier said than done, but try and be rational.
Remember a time when you coped with a similar situation and try to use the same strategies.
These are just a few steps towards managing stressful feelings in the workplace.
Referral to occupational health is a great step towards getting much-needed support when dealing with the causes of stress.
At Fusion, we can offer a range of health & wellbeing strategies to help tackle mental health issues in the workplace. If you’d like to know more, contact us today.
Posted by Louise Grieb on
18 April 2019 at 10:00 AM
Health & WellbeingMental HealthOccupational Health