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Is Workplace Stress Ruining Your Mental Health? Here’s How to Cope

Even if you love what you do for a living, every job has its own stressful elements.

And sure, some work-related stress is pretty common, and unavoidable. Deadlines to fulfill and challenging obligations will always exist.

However, if your job is constantly stressing you out and overwhelming you, it could be harming your mental health. After all, studies have shown that prolonged periods of stress can wreck your health and well-being.

Stressful work environments can lead to minor inconveniences, like headaches, stomachaches, and difficulty concentrating. But it’s important to remember that too much stress can also lead to serious health concerns, like obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, and even a weakened immune system.

What’s worse, all that workplace stress could be making you prone to depression, anxiety, and insomnia.

So, if you think that work-related stress is wrecking your mental health, here are a few tips to help keep it at bay.

Try Telecommuting

Obviously, this isn’t an option available to everyone. But, if it’s a possibility, you should try out telecommuting occasionally.

Sometimes, a lot of stress comes from the office environment itself. Your workplace might be extremely busy, and working from home could be a needed break from the hustle and bustle of a traditional office setting.

It can also help eliminate other distractions, like people stopping by your desk to distract you from your work, or worse — drop more work on you.

You may even discover that you’re more productive from your own home.

Stop Multi-Tasking

I don’t know how many times I’ve said this over the years — I even tell my own kids — stop trying to multi-task.

In theory, it sounds like a great idea. You get multiple things done at once, maximizing your time.

In real life, it never works out. Instead, you end up being less efficient, and more stressed out about being buried under so much. It’s much more efficient to focus all of your attention and energy into one task at a time, rather than doing a sub-par job on multiple tasks.

Take Plenty of Breaks

If you sit at a desk for most of the day, it’s important to get up and move around. Take little stretch breaks every so often, or take a stroll down to the break room. Anything will do, really, as long as you get up and get your blood flowing a little.

And it might be easy to skip lunch or eat at your desk while you work, but don’t. Stepping away from your desk is an important step to keeping the stress at bay and your mental health in good standing.

Walk away from work and eat lunch away from your desk. You can eat in a restaurant, outside at a nearby park, even down the hall in the break room. Where ever it is, you need a break away from the daily grind. It’ll help clear your mind for a bit and help you avoid burnout.

Leave the Office at the Office

When you leave the office, leave the office. After you’ve clocked out for the day, it’s time to stop answering emails, returning phone calls, and working on assignments. I promise that your coworkers or clients can wait until regular business hours.

By not taking the time to disconnect from work, you’re taking all that stress home with you.

Take the time to recharge, and practice a little self-care. That could mean listening to your favorite music on blast on the way home, or it could be practicing yoga. Do you like to relax in the bath with a glass of wine, or catch up on your Netflix queue? Whatever self-care looks like for you, do it and let your brain unwind.

Kat Sweet

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