You don’t need to be an executive to feel stress at work — it is an inevitable part of most jobs.
Some workers believe that working for long periods at peak performance is a measure of their efficiency, but this attitude can damage your health and relationships.
Ulcers, heart ailments, nervous exhaustion, absenteeism, and accidents — these are the price of too much stress, which costs both the employee and the employer.
With that in mind, here are five ways you can recharge at home without stressing out your family — your primary support team.
1. Communicate (appropriately)
If you constantly go into your cave to destress after work or bring your work home with you, your family might interpret your lack of attention to mean that you don’t value them or that they did something wrong.
Workers who “have difficulty in expressing their feelings, [then] tend to explode in moments of tension and then make an effort to be gentle and well mannered,” says one doctor, can experience the greatest stress.
On the other hand, numerous studies show that an individual best resists stress when he cultivates warm and loving friendships with those around him, especially with his family.
So, tell your family how you are feeling and reassure them that you love them and want to be with them.
Ensure your schedule some quality time with your loved ones each week. Just be together, hang out, and laugh a lot. This will help you to refocus on people who matter to you beyond the scope of your stressful job.
2. Exercise to unwind
Instead of attempting to fight stress with fast food or alcohol, do your best to make healthy choices when you feel the tension rise.
Exercise is a great stress-buster. Really any form of physical activity is beneficial, whether its gardening, working around the house, or going for a walk.
Also make time for hobbies and favourite activities. Whether it's reading a novel, going to concerts or playing games with your family, make sure to set aside time for the things that bring you pleasure.
Getting enough good-quality sleep is also important for effective stress management. Build healthy sleep habits by limiting your caffeine intake late in the day and minimising stimulating activities, such as computer and television use, at night.
3. Set digital boundaries
In today's digital world, it's easy to feel pressure to be available 24 hours a day. Have you been trying to relax in an evening only to look at your email, see something alarming, and become stressed?
One study showed the average person checks their phone 46 times per day, spending nearly five hours per day on mobile devices. Little wonder, then, up to 30 per cent of workers to consider their smartphones to be a “leash.”
Fight back by establishing some work-life boundaries for yourself.
That might mean making a rule not to check email from home in the evening, or not answering the phone during dinner.
Although people have different preferences when it comes to how much they blend their work and home life, creating some clear boundaries between these realms can reduce the potential for work-life conflict and the stress that goes with it.
4. Stop and recharge
Even when you enjoy your work, you may still have your share of stresses, difficult people, and unpleasant situations. So make time to recharge by having sufficient rest and balanced recreation.
Try to avoid defining yourself by the type and amount of work that you do, and cultivate interests and friendships apart from your work. No person on their deathbed wishes they spent more time at the office!
When possible, take time off to relax and unwind, so you come back to work feeling reinvigorated and ready to perform at your best. And don't let your vacation days go to waste.
5. Count your blessings
Cultivating a grateful attitude can greatly reduced stress. So, before you get home, review your workday to identify one thing — no matter how small — for which you’re grateful.
By proactively working to manage your stress, you can loosen its stranglehold on you and regain control of job and life.
Work stress is unavoidable in our modern world. But you can loosen its grip on you by communicating appropriately with your loved ones, unwinding through exercise, setting digital boundaries, stopping to recharge, and counting your blessings.