Dealing with stress at work

Written by    Last updated: September 5, 2007

Working in a busy office environment can mean dealing with stress on a daily basis, which could affect your health and happiness; here’s how to deal with it.

 Dealing with stress at work

Too much work

It could be that you take on more than you can cope with. From early on in the job, learn to say no but by giving a reason and with grace. Over-estimate the time it takes to do a job so that you don’t end up feeling frustrated.

Information overload

Learn to de-clutter your workspace, email inbox and your in‐tray on a daily basis. Remember that storing information is only useful if it’s easily retrievable.

Making decisions

Don’t waste too much time on low‐level decisions that will have no significant consequences. Learn from your mistakes and move on.

Don’t multi‐task

Things get done much faster if you do one thing at a time and do it well. Prioritise the tasks you need to do. Finish a task completely before moving onto the next one.

Take a break

Take frequent short breaks and don’t be tempted to skip the lunch break. You will return in a better and fresher state of mind that will help you deal with tasks more efficiently.


Don’t neglect diet and exercise even if you are desk bound all day. Eating healthily can become a habit providing you stick to it for a while. Walk part of the way to or from work or during your lunch break.

Office politics

Keep focused on your tasks rather than being distracted by others around you. Develop objectivity so that you don’t end up taking things personally.

Losing sleep

Worrying about work and losing sleep over it sets up a vicious cycle as you end up feeling more tired and less able to cope. Leave the office at the normal time each day; working longer hours when you’re tired leads to mistakes being made. Use the transition time from work to home to ‘switch off’ from work for the day.

Feeling bored

If you find boredom setting in get motivated by thinking about the bigger goals you want to achieve – in your career, in relationships and in yourself. Consider the possibility that you need to move on to something more challenging. Think about adding to your skills and discuss it with your boss.

Enjoy your leisure

Successful people know that in order to work hard you also have to play hard. Don’t think of leisure activities when at work and don’t allow work to affect your enjoyment of leisure time.

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