You’d be hard-pressed to find a member of the workforce who doesn’t regularly deal with job stress. Whether this stress stems from unmanageable workloads, overly-demanding bosses, annoying coworkers or any combination thereof, allowing job stress to go unchecked stands to compromise both your physical health and psychological well-being. Worse yet, many of us compound career-related stress without even realizing it. In the interest of getting your job stress down to manageable levels, avoid making the following mistakes.
Refusing to Set Healthy Boundaries
Setting healthy boundaries is essential in virtually every area of life. Whether the relationships you’re dealing with are personal or professional in nature, it is imperative that you speak up whenever you feel that your needs aren’t being met or certain lines have been crossed. Unsurprisingly, many of us are hesitant to set such boundaries in our respective places of business, as we feel this may jeopardize our jobs or place us in poor favor with our bosses. However, as is often the case, a refusal to set healthy boundaries is liable to result in you regularly being taken advantage of.
With this in mind, make a point of putting boundaries in place with your bosses and coworkers. For example, if certain coworkers are constantly unloading their work on you or expecting you to cover for their mistakes, inform them that while you’re happy to help out on occasion, you are primarily responsible for your own job duties, not theirs. Similarly, if your bosses habitually stick you with unmanageable workloads and unreasonable deadlines, let them know you’re being overworked. If you abstain from speaking up, there’s a good chance they won’t even realize that there’s a problem.
Being Afraid to Speak Up in the Face of Abuse
A fair number of workplaces are home to toxic and abusive atmospheres. Furthermore, workplace abuse can take many forms, with sexual harassment and power harassment being among the most common. Because they don’t want to place their employment status at risk, far too many workers refuse to speak up when they witness such behavior or find themselves on the receiving end of it.
While not speaking up may provide you with a sense of job security, it’s practically guaranteed to compound work-related stress. Conversely, reporting abuse and harassment to the appropriate parties may initially elicit feelings of discomfort, but it will make you feel better – and less stressed – in the long run. The only way abusive situations come to an end is people being brave enough to speak out.
Not Having a Healthy Outlet for Your Stress
Many of us opt to hide our stress from friends, family members and professional colleagues. As long as we’re able to conceal our stress, we believe that it must be manageable and therefore not worthy of outside treatment. However, keeping stress bottled up can result in a host of problems pertaining to both your physical health and psychological well-being.
As such, if compounding job stress has become a regular problem, you’d do well to consult with a therapist, counselor or any other relevant mental health care professional. These individuals will provide you with a healthy outlet for your stress, invaluable advice and effective coping tools to help ensure that job stress doesn’t become overwhelming.
Not Engaging in Relaxing Pastimes
To help counteract job stress, your leisure time should be devoted to relaxing activities. Creative outlets, meditation and kicking back with your favorite shows are all common examples of such pastimes. If you live in a state in which recreational marijuana use is legal, experimenting with strains of cannabis created specifically for stress relief may prove helpful. Additionally, cannabis-adjacent products like CBD cigarettes may prove similarly effective.
Working, by nature, is an inherently stressful experience. Since we essentially exist in a “work or die” society, many of us are dependent upon our jobs for basic livelihood. As such, the prospect of unemployment or demotion is often our chief motivator to roll with the punches in our respective workplaces. However, while working – particularly in an atmosphere of overwork – can ratchet up your stress levels, job stress should never come to dominate your life. Since many employers view workers as expendable drones, members of the workforce often embrace this view of themselves and inadvertently compound job-related stress. To get a handle on this issue, make a point of avoiding the blunders discussed above.