No matter what industry you're in the fall seems to be the time of year when business picks up.
Things are busier, more hectic and deadlines are looming.
As things go from the relative calm of the summer months to the hustle and bustle of September, it’s easy for anyone to get stressed out.
So how does one beat the stress beast?
I went to the experts – at least the ones on the internet – to find out what the modern worker can do to calm down on the stressiest of days.
Forbes.com had a few good suggestions. It even had ideas about how companies can lessen stress for their employees.
Its first tip was to create a colorful and bright environment with plenty of natural light.
Looking at the gray walls of my cubicle, I can agree with that idea. I need more kitten pictures or something.
Second, it suggested forming walking groups. Getting staff out of the office for a communal walk. Getting exercise while socializing can be a good way to bust a lot of stress at one time.
Forbes also suggested having stress-busting sessions, where employees can blow off the steam they’ve been building up.
Azzur Labs in Schnecksville does this. Since employees spend a lot of time hyper focused into a microscope, it has a lounge area with games and stress-busting activities where they can get a break if they need it. You can learn more about that office in the Sept. 24 “Coolest Offices in the Lehigh Valley” feature in Lehigh Valley Business.
One Forbes idea might be less popular with the staff.
It suggested switching the office coffee pot to decaf.
As a recent coffee-quitter myself, I can’t deny that it does help, but whoever actually switches the pot out might have to go on a long stress-busting walks – to hide from coworkers.
Find the entire Forbes.com article HERE.
On Reader’s Digest’s website I found what actually seemed like absolutely terrible ideas.
I’m only including them because laughing at them might bust a bit of stress for anyone reading this blog.
It recommends writing a check out to a group or organization you loathe.
Let’s pick “The National Society for Kicking Puppies,” which of course doesn’t exist, but you get my point.
Reader’s Digest suggests that you then give that check to a colleague with orders to send it to “TNSKP” if you fail to do an important work task or meet a deadline you’re facing.
How does that bust stress?
Now, instead of just letting down your employer or worse, getting FIRED, you have to worry about puppies getting kicked in your name.
That would not make me calm down.
Another Reader’s Digest suggestion is to read a poem out loud once a day.
Yeah, that’s going to make you really popular with our coworkers when you’re bursting into Emily Dickinson every time a deadline is looming.
A less bad tip is suggesting you listen to music. But, I suggest wearing headphones if you do that. Especially if you’re a fan of industrial death metal or something that might be less soothing to your coworkers.
I did like one RD.com tip.
Praise yourself at least once a day.
(This is a good blog, Stacy.)
I feel better already.
The whole Readers Digest article can be found HERE.
Men’s Health had a couple of good ones. It suggested phoning home if things get a bit overwhelming on the job.
You know Mom is going to take your side in any office disagreement you might be having and will remind you that you’re the BEST.
It also suggests counting to 10 in a foreign language. This seems like a smart move. It disengages your mind just enough to restart it from whatever is stressing you out, without taking too much time if that deadline really is looming.
HERE is the whole Men’s Health article.
According to BestLifeOnline, a study in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine found that office workers who take a 15-minute stretch break feel calmer and more productive afterward.
The article can be found HERE.
But the website also had a different way of looking at stress – as fuel.
“Rename anxiety and call it opportunity,” the website said. Rather than running away from stress use it to keep your productive energy flowing.
What works for you?