Absence levels at work as a whole are at an all-time low, and this is due to increased rates of presenteeism. However, just because people are having less time off work, it doesn’t mean that people are feeling any better at work. In the CIPD’s 2019 ‘health and well-being at work survey’, they found that 59% long terms absences were down to mental health, and 54% were as a result of stress!
It appears that we’re well trained in health and safety and how to reduce the likelihood of workplace accidents occurring. Yet, with over half of long term absences occurring as a result of stress, it is clear something needs to be done to reduce stress levels within the workplace. Not only will it help to look after our own health and wellbeing, but it will increase levels of job satisfaction as well as help to reduce staff turnover. Use the tips below in order to help reduce stress in the workplace.
Relationships at work are one of the top three causes of stress-related absence according to CIPD. As human beings, it’s natural for us to crave friendships, conversations and positive interactions. Without these, work can be a more lonely, and less enjoyable place to be. Put trust in your team and your colleagues, treat each other with respect and value their ideas. If you build strong and positive relationships with those that you work with, you’ll encourage open communication and feel able to offload to them when you feel you need to; keeping those stress levels at bay!
The importance of a good night’s sleep should not be underestimated! When you sleep well, you naturally feel happier, more motivated and increasingly productive throughout the day. However, with busier workdays and social lives, getting that recommended 8 hours of sleep a night has become increasingly difficult. If you do struggle sleeping, you’re more likely to feel low, have a lack of motivation and focus, which is all directly linked with increasing stress levels. Read more about sleep and how to develop a good bedtime routine on our blog.
Managing your workload efficiently, and using your team around you is really important in keeping your stress levels at a minimum. Each day, prioritise your most important tasks and get those done first – even if they’re not necessarily the easiest. Set yourself deadlines and stick to them! Many people use the Pomodoro Technique – working in chunks of 25 minute to get tasks done. After 25 minutes is up, take a quick break, and after 4 pomodoros take a longer break to re-charge.
Imposter syndrome is the belief that you’re inadequate and do not deserve to be in the position that you’re in, despite there being evidence which proves otherwise. When imposter syndrome kicks in, it’s likely you’ll feel overly anxious about situations and will put additional pressure on yourself – raising those stress levels! When you feel like this, it’s important to acknowledge your state of mind and talk out your feeling to take a more rational view on things. Remember from time to time praise yourself for doing a great job!
When we overthink situations, unrealistic situations play on our mind which can make a situation seem even more stressful. In a close-knit workplace environment, it’s easy for small things to escalate, raising your stress and anger levels much faster than they usually would. If something is bothering you, or there is a workplace issue that needs addressing, deal with it sooner rather than later to keep stress levels at a minimum.
Above all, the most important tip in this post is to take such much needed time out for yourself! Do whatever makes you feel most relaxed and at peace. This can be done both inside and outside of the workplace too. A really popular topic in the wellness community is mindfulness; a meditation-like practise that helps you to refocus your mind and better focus on what is happening in the present. Trying doing short exercises at your desk to refocus your mind, and keep those harmful, stressful feelings at bay!
As well as using the tips above as individuals, by investing in a Workplace Health and Wellbeing program you can help to encourage workplace wellness, and roll this out as part of the company culture. This means that your employees will have higher job satisfaction, and are happier in and outside of the workplace! Find out more about this service by getting in touch with our specialist occupational health team at David Barber today.
Tell us your name and number below and we'll give you a callback to discuss your requirements.