Did you know that work stress is one of the leading causes of emotional, mental, and physical illness?
It’s true, according to Jobs & Hire writer Maureen Bongat, who’s put together an excellent advice roundup titled “3 Tips on How to Overcome Work Stress.” As Bongat says, on-the-job stress can become a kind of personal disability if you let it “manipulate your ability to carry out your work and everyday tasks.” Before it gets to that point, it’s best to take heed of her words of wisdom.
Bongat’s first tip is to “act before reacting.” Piggybacking on what business psychologist and Success Under Stress author Sharon Melnick, Ph.D., told Forbes, Bongat says negative thinking — i.e. feeling like things are out of control — can trigger stress hormones that, over time, lead to diminished confidence, concentration, and well-being. The takeaway here: Power through your work before you feel overwhelmed.
While stress can often be a mental game, it also pays, Bongat says, to “de-stress your body.” Here, that old “you are what you eat” saying comes to mind, as she recommends fruits and veggies and foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids. These can be found in flax seeds, hemp, chia, and salmon, which also boasts a lot of protein. Steer clear of those processed foods — according to Greatist, they’ll only make you feel anxious.
Finally, it’s a good idea to “establish boundaries between work and rest.” Technology has made constant connectivity a reality for millions of Americans, and those with jobs that pay overtime might be especially motivated to, say, check email during nights and weekends and accept extra work when it comes along. The extra cash can be tempting, but as Bongat writes, “you’re a person, not a robot,” and that means the occasional breather is a must. This advice comes straight from the American Psychological Association, so you know it’s legit.