How to reduce or eliminate stress?

High levels of stress at work and home can be harmful to a person's mental and physical health. Some of the health problems include heart attacks, depression, insomnia, memory and concentration loss, and immune system breakdowns. Workers are more absent from work, become unproductive or make mistakes that can be dangerous, and the company loses money. Companies and workers can prevent stress or deal with stress at work with positive results.

How can the company deal with stress issues?

Companies can set policies and procedure in place to enhance the quality and consistency of management. This ensures that the employees know what types of instruments are in place to assist them and what procedures to follow. These policies may include:

  • Personal leave
  • Sick leave
  • Procedures for filing a complaint
  • Disciplinary action policy
  • Clear policy on discrimination and harassment
  • Disability work guidelines
  • Access to documentation and employment
  • Apart from policies, the company has a responsibility to create a safe and non-discriminatory work area. This includes the design of work spaces for people with disabilities.
  • The company should also have a counselor or consultant for assistance with regard to stress.
  • The enterprise must ensure that the managers are available and open to input from employees.
  • Businesses must ensure that they recruit workers that can handle the responsibilities and tasks. The job description should thus fit the worker's profile and skills.
  • Provide recognition for outstanding performances and reliability.
  • Have open discussions about changes in the work environment and company policies before it takes place.
  • Installing stress prevention assessments, intervention methods, and evaluation of the results.
  • Address problem areas and find solutions.
  • Encourage stress management training.
  • Promote personal health care.
  • Set reasonable work hours that accommodate the worker's family life.
  • Promote social contact after work hours.
  • Ensure that the work place is safe and welcoming.
  • Provide ongoing training opportunities.
  • Make sure that workers know what career prospects they have in the company and what they can do when they have reached to the top in their departments.

Work related stress is one of the biggest contributors to job related health problems. When the workers experience unreasonable amounts of pressure, they start to work longer hours, take fewer breaks and push themselves harder to try and match the demands. This in return leads to health and mental problems that have a negative impact on the corporate culture. Companies need to deal with stress to ensure a happy workforce and low turnover rate.

How can the employee deal with stress at work?

The first step is to create space for your needs. Don't endeavor to work harder to meet deadlines, or to solve the issues that pile up. Relax, take some time for yourself. Change your daily routine to make time for those things you enjoy. Visit a friend or take long walks, participate in sport, or read a book.

A checklist of the factors that create stress and eliminate those you can. Some methods of solving stress at work:

  • Agree to practical assistance from others
  • Focus on one thing at a time. Don't try to finish all tasks at once.
  • Keep expectations to a reasonable level. If you set too high standards, you will constantly work harder and feel more pressure in reaching the goals.
  • Discuss issues that cause stress with someone
  • Make time to do those things you love
  • Get rid of negative energy by hitting a punch bag, yell when you're alone
  • Avoid situations that cause additional stress.
  • Don't allow negative or critical people in you life; associate with positive persons.
  • Take deep and slow breaths
  • See a counselor or therapist
  • Take lunch breaks
  • Work normal hours
  • Don't deny yourself holidays and weekends.
  • If you have flexi-hours, then use it to miss the peak hour traffic or to take care of family responsibilities
  • Take care of your health by eating a balanced diet and through regular modest exercise
  • Seek help if you have addictions such as gambling, excessive smoking, drugs, alcohol, or sleeping pills
  • Make sure that you spend at least fifteen minutes a day outdoors
  • Use relaxation methods
  • Change the work space to make it comfortable and customize it to your needs.
  • Be assertive and learn to say no to unfair requirements or demands.
  • Talk to your manager about work related problems. If he is not approachable, talk the human resource officer or the trade union, but try to resolve work issues.
  • Take care about the way you treat colleagues. Show courtesy and respect.
  • Get acquainted with the corporate policies and procedures on harassment, discrimination and unfair treatment. Use the instruments available to counter any such treatment.

These guidelines can be used by both the enterprise and the employee to deal with stress related issues.