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Health, Stress, Stress and health

Preventing work related stress

Our professional lives will be a constant source of stress. It is important to manage stress in your work life. It will not only make your work easier and more effective, but will also give you room to truly relax when you are off work.

  • Make a plan for your long-term goals.
  • Be qualified to perform your tasks and assignments.
  • Prioritize your tasks.
  • Plan and organize your time making space for the unexpected.
  • Learn to say no and stop.
  • Delegate tasks and jobs to others.
  • Get to know your co-workers and use them.
  • Use your leader and co-workers as support.
  • Take breaks.
  • Give yourself small rewards when you reach a goal.
  • Focus on what you have achieved.

Planning your future projects and goals can save you from a lot of stress and worry. By having clear goals and ideas of where you want to be can plan for it and set up a schedule that is both possible and at a pace you can follow. Having goals also provides you with a reason and motivation for completing tasks and assignments.

Plan ahead for at least a year and remember to take in all the partial goals and steps. Make a plan for where you want to be in a week, a month, 3 months, 6 months, 9 months and a year, or as is appropriate. The more you can write into a calender, the less you have to think about and make sure you remember.

Organize your time and schedule so there is room for the unexpected. This way you will not suddenly end up with a double load of work in half the time if an urgent assignment lands on your desk. It will also give a good sense of achievement and pleasure to be able to finish projects ahead of time, which again helps you relax and reduces stress.

Only accept projects and tasks that you have the professional qualifications for, and which will fit into your schedule. Focus on the projects that has the highest priority and delegate the rest to others, or plan them for later when they will have higher priority.

A lot of stress can be avoided if you stay with projects you are qualified for. Doing research and learning new skills takes a lot of time and energy. When you are stressed by other projects learning will not be efficient and you will end up spending a lot more time on a project than is reasonable.

Knowing your co-workers not only gives you a resource you can turn to for help and knowledge, but also gives you a social network which in itself can reduce stress. Co-workers are important since they can aid you with a project, you can delegate work to them, or obtain knowledge to deal with a specific problem. They also provide a social circle that you can socialize with and speak to when you need to let go of steam and frustration. Having someone listening to you and understand you can release a lot of tensions and provide a fresh view on how to deal with a situation.

Learning to say stop is an important skills. By being realistic about what you can manage, and refuse what you can’t cope with, you avoid getting over-burdened. We all want to be nice and helpful to people, but we need to realize that we are doing ourselves a disfavour when we accept more than we can manage. A stressed co-worker is not a good co-worker.

Taking short breaks through the day is important in order to manage stress and reduce the risk of it. By granting yourself those small rewards and breathers you recharge yourself and will be able to focus on a project with fresh energy and clearer mind. Just like you can’t run 8 hours in a row without a break to catch our breath, nor can you work constantly without short breaks. Forgetting to grant yourself those small breaks throughout the day is a sure way to burn you out.

By focusing on what you have achieved you give yourself a boost of confidence, a reason to reward yourself and not the least, a chance to relax because you have reached a goal. Focusing on what you still need to do will only cause you stress and make you see all the hard work that is left and not what you already completed.

Positive thinking charges us and reduces stress. Negative thinking drains us for energy and causes stress. Positive thinking is one of the strongest resources we as humans have, and it is important to focus on this.


About Pia Poulsen

Pia Poulsen is educated as a wellness massage therapist at Institut FIGARI in Paris, from where she passed her certification exam in January 2008. Since then she has expanded her skills to become the first Advanced LaStone® practitioner in France as well as a certified LaStone® instructor.


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