Being under pressure is a part of normal life, but becoming overwhelmed by stress can lead to mental health problems, or make existing problems worse. On Stress Awareness Day, we will be highlighting the ways that stress can affect people, and what you can do to manage your stress before it becomes a problem.
A recent survey by the Mental Health Foundation found that 74% of us have felt so stressed we have felt unable to cope in the last 12 months. A small amount of stress can be useful – it can motivate you to take action and get tasks completed – but too much stress can have negative effects, such as changes in your mood, your body and relationship issues.
There are things that you can do to help reduce your symptoms of stress, known as self-care. Everyone is different, and you may need to try different things until you find what works for you. There are other self-regulation approaches that you can take, to help manage stress.
Plan your time
Planning your time can help you to feel more in control of things. Approaches you can take which will help include:
- Writing lists of what you need to do
- Prioritise the most important tasks
- Set yourself steps and foals for complicated tasks
- Don’t put things off
Talk to someone
Telling someone how you feel may help with stress, and help to ‘offload’ your worries. It doesn’t have to be someone you know – you might prefer to talk to someone who doesn’t know you. Employee Assistance Programmes are a fantastic addition to an employee benefits package, and allow employers to show support as well as signpost colleagues who may be suffering to getting practical advice.
Make lifestyle changes
Limiting your caffeine intake, taking exercise and getting enough sleep can help your body operate at optimal levels, which can help to combat stress.
Mindfulness is a type of mediation which helps you to be aware of being in the present and pay attention. This can help to deal with symptoms of stress, depression and anxiety. You can find online mindfulness courses on YouTube, or there are plenty of apps which can help you to practice mindfulness.
Relaxation can help you to deal with stress and stop you from getting stressed in the first instance. Some people relax using meditation, aromatherapy or yoga.
The pointers above are by no means extensive, and different approaches will work for different people. It’s important to try and know what works for you and practice this regularly, in order to reduce the risk or impact of stress. It’s also good to encourage your employees to take on some of these pointers where possible. advo can provide training for managers in spotting, signposting and managing employees with mental health conditions, including stress. Talk to us today about supporting employee mental health.
Original info here.