stress management

5 ways to manage stress to help boost your productivity and wellbeing

Posted on 1 November, 2023 by Lyndsey Segal in Business Coaching, Professional Coaching, wellbeing

In today’s fast-paced world, stress has become an inevitable part of our lives. 

The Workplace Health Report 2023 showed 76% of employees surveyed are experiencing moderate to high levels of stress, with workload being the most frequently reported stressor at work.

Therefore, learning effective strategies to manage and reduce stress is crucial to help us live and work more happily, healthily and sustainably.

Here are 5 ways to manage stress to help boost your productivity and wellbeing, both in and out of the workplace:

1) Identify stressors

Understanding the things that cause stress is the starting point in helping to manage it.

A stress diary can help to identify the causes of stress, why the situation made you feel stressed, as well as your thoughts, feelings and emotions at the time. Often, the act of writing these down can be cathartic, helping to gain perspective and reduce stress. 

2) Prioritise your workload 

A heavy workload and limited time to complete it can contribute to feelings of stress.

Prioritise tasks based on urgency (due date/time) and importance (linked to your goals).

Break large projects into smaller chunks or sub-tasks to make them more manageable and achievable. 

Identify what’s really important today and what can wait until tomorrow or next week.

3) Challenge negative thinking

Stress is often caused by how we perceive a situation and the narrative we use to describe it. 

Challenge negative thoughts and replace them with more positive, objective and rational thoughts to help deal with difficult or stressful situations.

Use affirmations such as

I am…

I can…

I have…

to help replace negative with positive thinking.

4) Take breaks

Breaks help to:

  • Restore focus and motivation
  • Consolidate memory and learning 
  • Boost creativity and productivity
  • Reduce stress

Build a combination of micro-breaks, moving breaks, nature breaks and social breaks into each day to help you reenergise and refocus. 

Set an alarm as a reminder to have breaks away from your screen for a few minutes every hour. 

5) Create me time

This is time that is just yours, to do what you want with, whether that’s being in nature, meeting friends, reading a book, or listening to music. This helps to create distance away from work and recharge your batteries. 

Me time can also be in the work environment where you set boundaries for when you are available and when you are not available, giving yourself time to focus on deep work without interruptions and distractions.

Relaxation techniques such as meditation, mindfulness and deep breathing are great ways to manage symptoms of stress. These can be particularly helpful before going to bed to ensure a good night’s sleep. 

Whether it’s related to work, relationships, health, finances or family, stress can affect us in many different ways and can significantly impact our productivity and wellbeing. Learning how to manage stress helps us to be more resilient to stress and helps to boost our productivity and wellbeing.

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