21 ways to manage stress at work

Understand and inculcate some practical tips to deal with the anxiety issues effectively to help yourself stay motivated, confident and pragmatic

By Mohita Shrivastava

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Published: Thu 19 Jan 2023, 7:41 PM

Anxiety issues like generalised anxiety disorder, panic, phobia, social anxiety disorder, etc. are usually experienced among working professionals both at home and workplace. Anxiety indicates that something is not correct, either physically/emotionally, or we are feeling unsafe in the outer environment/within ourselves. Normally, anxiety is transient in nature, a reaction for fight/fright/flight response to prepare for or react to environmental changes. However, it becomes pathological ‘anxiety disorder’ when it starts affecting normal functioning, becomes static and overwhelming with unpleasant, apprehensive thoughts, worry and fear with bodily sensations leading to debilitating psychological, behavioural, and physiological issues.

What causes anxiety among working professionals?

• Fear factor: Job loss, skill set becoming obsolete, transfer to remote locations, victim of company politics, job change not working out — what next?

• Worry war: Career stagnation, colleagues superceding, poor communication, managerial, technical, functional skills, subjective performance appraisal, being underpaid related to your skill set, not being in the good books of superiors, unable to maintain the standard of living of the family, health issues, etc.

Ways to manage stress and anxiety issues

Understand and inculcate some practical tips to deal with the anxiety issues effectively to help yourself stay motivated, confident and pragmatic, not only at work but also in your routine lives.

1. Relax. You are not alone. No one else knows what they’re doing either so just stay cool and focused.

2. Do not live to please others. This surely invites stress and anxiety.

3. Challenge the fear factor by gathering courage and taking action.

4. Learn to dispose the trash of modern life — we all generate it, disposing it properly will not overtake life.

5. Accept that you can do anything but not everything.

6. Embrace human life rather than spending it in war with yourself.

7. Become proactive and understand that it always seems impossible until it’s done.

8. Turn challenges into opportunities — ‘these mountains that you are carrying, you were only supposed to climb’.

9. Don’t focus on the whole staircase, just take the first step.

10. Do not regret mistakes, rather the greatest mistake you can make is to be continually fearing you will make one.

11. Understand that to accomplish anything in life, a proper plan is needed, not the worry, fear or ‘enough’ time.

12. Performance anxiety should be a powerful driving force, not an obstacle. Do not procrastinate. Focus on getting the job done by setting up honest deadlines.

13. Stay hydrated and try to avoid CATS (caffeine, alcohol, tobacco, sugar), which are anxiety-enhancing — ‘A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety’.

14. Practise mindfulness and breathing exercises to become aware of your thoughts and bodily sensations to stay mindful of the present.

15. Be humorous and have a little fun with others and yourself at work. No one likes grumpy looks, not even YOU!

16. Smile and compliment yourself and others genuinely.

17. Practise gratitude for your co-workers for all the help and support required.

18. Extend a helping hand to others at the time of need and improve your ‘self -worth’.

19. Avoid ‘triangling’ — gossiping about and criticising a third person, rather resolve it by communicating the facts with the concerned person.

20. Be creative and find novel ideas.

21. Praise yourself by grooming, rewarding, and appreciating your efforts.


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