Be Kind: Unwind
Stress sucks. We know it’s easy to become overwhelmed at work, causing you to be less productive and less happy. When stress hits, you have two choices: fly off the handle or take control by redirecting your scattered energy in a positive way. Here are a few techniques to help you de-stress when work gets crazy:
Keep the past in the past.
Have you ever made a mistake that caused turmoil in the workplace or disrupted workflow? Are you still dwelling on it? If so, stop now. Carrying around baggage from months past will only worsen current stressors. The same thing goes if someone else has upset you. As Rafiki from The Lion King once said, “Oh yes, the past can hurt. But the way I see it, you can either run from it or learn from it.” What a wise little monkey man! You have to accept the past, learn from it, forgive and move on. A little bit of advice: own up to your mistakes, apologize to whomever you upset, make it right, forgive and move on. Remember that you are human and mistakes happen, so don’t get too down on yourself.
Get a hobby.
Find something you enjoy doing that doesn’t relate to your job. Even if you love your job (which we hope you do) you need to focus on other things that make you happy. A couple ideas: join a kickboxing or yoga class, volunteer with a local non-profit you are passionate about, take guitar lessons or teach yourself how to sew. Regardless of what piques your interest, finding something you enjoy doing will help take your mind off work and reduce your stress levels.
Exercise is one of the best ways to relieve stress because it boosts your feel-good endorphins and helps take your mind off daily stressors. Not one of the crazies who “runs for fun” in the blistering cold? Not to worry! There’s plenty of other ways you can get your daily dose of exercise like going for a walk on your lunch break, attending fitness classes before or after work or breaking a sweat to one of Jillian Michaels’ workout DVDs (she’s guaranteed to kick your butt).
If stress is keeping you from getting your work done, throw on your headphones, play some John Mayer and find your happy place. Listening to music is a great way to relieve stress because it reduces muscle tension and decreases stress hormones, providing a mental distraction from what’s stressing you out.
Pet your pet.
As most of you already know, 834 is full of fur moms. It’s true, we find nothing odd about tucking our pets in at night and putting sweaters on them when it’s cold outside. If you’re having a stressful day, pet, snuggle or play with your fur kid. Heck, we even bring our pets into the office. Being around these fur balls is therapeutic. If you don’t have a pet, consider adopting. Not interested in adopting? Reconsider. Only kidding… sort of.
You have a million and one things to complete today, so why not try doing all of your tasks at once? Because that is not productive and a path to complete madness. To reduce stress and increase productivity, make a list of to-do’s, have it in front of you at all times and focus on tasks individually. Crossing tasks off your list as you complete them will make you feel more accomplished and less overwhelmed.
Hate the idea of being detached from your smartphone? We do, too. When you get home from work, disconnect from the world for a little while and unwind. Also, try not to get in the habit of staying up all night working. Take the evening to relax so you are refreshed for work the next day.
Keep these tips in mind if you’re having one of those days, and if you can’t remember them all, just think, “John Mayer and kittens”.
Sources: Mayo Clinc, Rafiki from the Lion King