8 Secrets to Managing Workplace Stress

The time you spend at the office may be the most stressful part of your day, but it doesn't have to be.

You have a greater ability to shape your office environment than you may realize.

1. Take breaks throughout the day. It will help clear your mind and relieve pressure. Something as simple as going to the water cooler for a drink may do the trick.

2. Enroll in a noontime or an after-work exercise class.This will give you a chance to unwind and a way to relieve stress.

3. To help your workday go smoothly, try pacing your activities: Do more demanding work in the morning, when your energy level is higher, and easier work later in the day, when you may be tired.

4. Try listening to music recordings, such as a pounding surf or songbirds, to help you relax. Such tapes are sold commercially. Use headphones if you’ll be listening to them in the middle of the workday.

5. Get to work early or stay late once a week. You may be able to accomplish more when you vary your routine.

6. If your stress comes from job insecurity, take stock of yourself. Update your resume, and remind yourself of your skills and strengths. Also, make sure you keep up with new developments in your field. This will make you valuable to employers.

7. Don’t let work rumors, which are usually false, cause you worry. A co-worker may just be thinking out loud about worst-case scenarios.

8. If your office is less structured (or if you are the boss), consider a company mascot. A cat or dog can do wonders for workers’ morale.

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