Is your job bringing unnecessary stress into your life? Maybe you are experiencing interpersonal conflicts with coworkers, have an uncomfortable workspace, or feel disorganized.  Whatever the reason for your stress may be, there are many ways to help reduce the feeling of being overwhelmed. Here are some stress management techniques that you can try for yourself. 

1) Eat a healthy breakfast. 

If your morning consists of trying to get the kids ready for school, dodging your way through traffic, and gulping down some coffee rather than something more nutritious, you might be coming in to work already more stressed than you’d like to be. Start the day off with a healthy breakfast, planning, and positivity to ease that morning stress and get you going more smoothly. If you feel like you won’t have time to make a proper breakfast in the morning, plan ahead with some make-ahead breakfasts that stay in your fridge or freezer until you’re ready to grab it and go in the morning! 

breakfast

2) Keep a journal. 

If you aren’t sure what exactly is causing you stress at work, keep a journal for a week or two to track your stressors. Identify which situations cause you the most stress and how you respond to them. After recording your thoughts, feelings, and actions for each stressor, you can look back to see which ones may require the most attention and you can focus your energy on eliminating one stressor at a time. You will also notice patterns with how you cope. Did you feel better on the days that you went for a walk instead of getting a soda? Which people did you have around you on the days you felt the best? Identify what makes you feel the best and recreate those situations! 

3) Establish boundaries. 

We are constantly connected to the internet and to others with our smartphones. This can make it hard to turn work “off” when you head home for the day and your work email notifications are interrupting your personal time. Establish some work-life boundaries for yourself. This might mean setting rules for yourself that you don’t check work emails while you’re at home or you don’t answer the phone during dinner. Creating clear boundaries between work and life, however those boundaries look for you, can ease a lot of stress and enhance your work-life balance. 

4) Talk to your supervisor. 

Employee health has been linked to productivity at work, so your boss has an incentive to keep the workplace a happy, healthy place to be. If you are feeling stressed or overwhelmed, have an open conversation with your supervisor to come up with an effective plan for managing your workload and stress. This can mean identifying ways your supervisor can support you, clarifying your duties, or making changes to your physical workplace to be more comfortable.  

5) Replace negative thoughts with positivity. 

If negative thoughts have a habit of making their way into your brain, you may want to try to re-frame those thoughts to be more positive and productive. The negativity increases stress levels and turning them into positive thoughts can be beneficial to your stress level and mental health overall. You can work on changing your negative phrases into positive ones in many ways. First, replace the negative thought with a positive one. Repeat this positive thought over and over to yourself – you can even say it out loud or share it with a friend! Write the thought over and over as well. You can also make yourself signs or notes with positive thoughts or quotes to put in prominent places like your mirror, refrigerator, or desk. 

positivity

Here are some common negative thoughts and how you can change them to be more positive: 

Negative Thought 

Positive Thought 

“I am not worth anything.” 

“I am a valuable person.” 

“I always make mistakes.” 

“I do many things well.” 

“I don’t know what to do.” 

“I’m going to find out how to accomplish this.” 

“I wish I hadn’t done that.” 

“I can’t change the past – learn and move on.” 

Recent Posts