How To Cope Under Pressure At Work (Workplace Stress Management Techniques That Work)
Effective Strategies For Managing Stress In The Workplace
In a fast-paced world filled with the internet, fast cars an fast foods, a lot of us experience pressure at school, home and most especially at work.
Dealing with pressure is no mean feat especially with everything that is fighting for our attention. The much we can do is to try and juggle all the activities to achieve relative balance.
Depending on what you do, you face different types of pressure. There are several reasons why we face pressure at work. Identifying and acknowledging them is actually the first step towards overcoming them.
Causes Of Stress At Work
Some of the reasons for them include:
This is probably the first and major reason why most people face pressure at work. Low salaries keep employees on the edge of their seats. It makes them feel pressured to either retain the job or look for an alternative.
In a recent employee research, low salary was found to be one of the highest sources of non motivation and pressure among employees.
Unclear Goals and Expectations
Some workers are sometimes left in a state of cacophony from their employers due to lack of clarity as to what is expected of and from them. In this case, the employees are always tensed because they do not know what is coming. Aside from putting them under pressure, such environment leads to low productivity, lack of cordination and balance. This is not good for any working environment that wishes to thrive.
When workers have too much on their plates with little time to execute them, we say they have excessive workloads. This is the case in some working environments due to shortage of workers or a particular worker who is efficient. The result is that they are never settled to actually do a thorough work.
Apart from a poorly done job, it puts increasing pressure on the worker because he/she is trying to beat a deadline thereby making them not to reach their full capacity.
Lack of Incentives
How else would you wish to motivate your workers without some tips, bonuses or incentives every once in a while? You must remember that your employees face pressure from other activities such as family etc. adding another from work would be one too many.
Most employers think it is the customers that sustain a company. In actual fact, it is the employees because it is their attitude and disposition that would in turn affect productivity either positively or otherwise. When your employees are not treated well, it trickles down to even how they attend to customers. Some of the customers may even stop patronizing you due to the shabby treatment they got.
Aside from this, it puts pressure on the workers as they work frantically to make ends meet.
Little or No Opportunity to Grow
Some companies provide little or no opportunity for their employees to grow their career. The ideal working should be when seminars and or workshops are organized for employees in order for them to gain hands-on training working experience and training to advance their careers.
When this is not the case, it puts pressure them because it may make them feel competent, less productive and generally tensed.
Workers in this category usually leave their work place because they have little or no opportunity for growth. This usually causes a stagnation in people’s career making them feel insecure and unsatisfied. a job is not supposed to be a chore. It is supposed to be an activity that one enjoys doing.
You have to understand that pressure comes along with stress. They are like siamese twins, that cannot exist without the other. James Allen affirmed thus the more tranquil a man becomes, the greater is his success, his influence, his power for good.
You can already see that peace and quiet is directly linked to power and success. The first step is to realize that you need to fight a whole bunch of negative emotions on a daily basis. They leave you on the edge of the seat and affects your health negatively.
Everyone therefore ought to develop the ability to stay calm even when they are under pressure especially at work.
How To Deal With Pressure At Work
Here are some tips to help you deal with pressure at work.
Take some time out
It appears that taking some time out or off from the cause of the pressure is a good way to work on it.
In moments of pressure, it is always better to consider having time and space in order to see the possibilities of moving forward. Moving away from the situation could happen both ways: physically and emotionally.
Having done this, ask yourself the following questions: why am I feeling pressured? Does this happen all the time? Do I fully understand the situation? Am I being biased? Is it possible that external factors are influencing my emotions/feelings thus causing me pressure?
Most times, when we truly analyse the cause(s) of pressure, it may not be caused by factors (external) but from the inside.
For instance,hearing that you will have a meeting with your boss. Now you do not even know why he/she is calling you but you are already developing cold feet. This should only be the case when you know that you have not done what you are supposed to do.
Take deep calming breaths. The only thing that may need to change is your own perspective of the situation.
This is very important when you are under pressure. Most times, it is in the details that we tend to find answers to our burning questions and needs. Usually when we feel pressure at work, we seem to be enveloped in the circumstances and situations. As a result, you become completely awash and the whole situation becomes one big jumble of mess.
Instead of focusing on the bad situation, pay close attention to the little things you may have ignored such as your behaviours, your colleagues’ behaviours and everything that is generally that is going on.
You will notice that when you are more attentive you can then separate the real issue from the imaginations. You disembody them and that is when you realize that they are little units of issues that you can actually work towards finding a solution to each of them.
Know What Stresses You
You need to clearly pin point exactly what your stressors are. This helps you know how to tackle them. This becomes all the more crucial if you switched jobs or are in a new job. You can take notes for the first month to find out which task(s) caused you more stress than others.
These situations are usually consistent so you note them in a journal or diary. How do you react to them? Was it a positive or negative reaction?
The reason why it is good to take notes is so that you can determine the stressors, find out their time frame or consistency, notice how you react. This so crucial if you wish to last long on any job.
If you have already noted them, when these situations arise, you will no longer be ruffled. You will automatically know how to deal them before they get out of control.
Stay as far away as possible from conflicts
Especially the ones you do not know their origins. Office gossips are not what you should meddle in. even if you hear news flying in the office with your name tag on it, do not comment on the issue.
Doing that automatically confirms and validates the story. The same way it started, is the same way it will fizzle out. If you want to have sound health, mind, emotional balance and good mental health, stay away as far as possible from conflicts because they affect you negatively.
What this means is that you should not gossip, share too much of your personal information or issues with colleagues, discuss politics and religion and any other sensitive issue(s). Also avoid those at work who are very difficult to deal with.
Cut back on multi-tasking
Yes I know this is one of the top skills everyone aspires to have in order to be efficient at work.
However, have you ever paused to think of how this hampered your progress not to talk of reduced accuracy (which is the very purpose we are trying to achieve).
Take for instance you are on the phone with a customer and you are chatting with yet another customer and trying to resolve their issues. Your speed and accuracy will obviously suffer. So instead of multi-tasking and juggling several tasks and not completing any, do it one at a time. If you have phone calls to attend to, finish them before going into live conversations.
This way, you will accomplish a set of task instead of delving into all and having a jumbled mess at the end day.
If you do not take breaks, you will break down. It is as simple as that. So no matter how busy you are may be, remember that if you become incapacitated, there will always be someone to do the job.
So take short breaks every once in a while, it keeps you refreshed and enables you take on the day’s challenges with renewed vigour.
Less Coffee Please
While coffee is a good stimulant and works well when in small amounts, too much of it can actually causes stress and insomnia.
So try to cut back on the quantity you take. You may decide to have it three times weekly. Be sure to space it- Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
On a general note, try to limit and cut back on everything that is a stimulant for the sake of your own health. This goes for chocolates and chocolate snacks too.
This may be almost impossible when you are under pressure but doing so actually proves that you have things under control. This will take some time to perfect but with constant practice, you will. Besides the fact that staying calm actually helps you get through things, it also showcases you as being cool and unruffled. Doing this also shows you as being level-headed and capable of managing turbulent situations.
Plus you do not want to have everyone at the office asking what is wrong with you. Keep a steely appearance and do not let the tide show.
Accomplish as much as you can
No matter the pressure at work, it is no excuse not to finish your task or at least do a great deal. Keep your mind firmly focused on the task and forget about your own pressures for that particular time.
Remember that your boss obviously does not care about the pressure you are going through at work. What they care about is getting the job done and done very well.
The trick is this: get the job done before letting the pressure show or complain. Most times, employers do not care about the obstacles you face while trying to accomplish a given task. They will only care after the job had been done. Get the strap and work with it.
Get help if you must
Sometimes, you may feel like you can handle issues on your own. As a result, you keep what you are going through to yourself. Sometimes, keeping calm about issues do not work. You actually need to speak out (sometimes) or to talk to people about the pressure you are going through.
As long as you are sure to get help from them, find a therapist, or even a trusted colleague. Bare your mind to them and let them help you find a lasting solution to the problem. It is even possible that they may have had similar issues and their advice and suggestions may be all you need to get through the difficult time.
Dealing with pressure at work is something everyone faces. The difference is in the way we choose to handle them. The listed steps are simply a guide to help you. If you have other means, by all means try them, decide which ones work best for you and stick to them.