In a recent global survey of 1,000 corporations across 15 countries, commissioned by The Regus Group it was found that the levels of workplace stress have risen over the last two years. These heightened stress levels are costing world economies billions of dollars in lost productivity and health related problems, according to an article on the Global Organization for Stress. It’s thus a priority for us to achieve a healthy-work life balance and deal with daily work stress.
Jumia Travel shares 5 tips on how this can be achieved.
LEARN TO DROP THE CUP
If you hold a small cup of water in your hand for five minutes, you barely feel that you’re holding something. Now, imagine you hold that same cup of water without dropping it for 24 hours; it becomes significantly more difficult to hold. After a couple of hours of continuously holding the cup, it seems to get heavier and more unbearable to carry. The same thing applies to the burdens we carry that lead to work-related stress. The more you “carry” the burdens and hassles related to your work, the heavier they become even though in itself, the burdens, hassles or issues are still the same weight, size, etc.
Worrying isn’t going to solve the issue at hand, so let go of it, free your mind of its weight. Instead, be proactive, think of solutions to solve the issue, and if you can’t think of any, ask or pay for advice. Consultancies were established for this reason. In work-related issues, action is always better than reaction. So remember, learn to drop the cup.
DEVELOP A PERSONAL SYSTEM OF EFFICIENTLY HANDLING YOUR WORK AND DISCHARGING YOUR DUTIES
Especially for target-based jobs, where you have KPIs you have to unfailingly deliver on within stipulated times and periods, you need to develop a system personally tailored to accommodate your strengths and weaknesses in order to help you discharge these duties efficiently with the least amount of stress. You need to have an understanding of the best times for you to get your work done, best places within your work environment to help you accomplish this, the things in your daily work routine you need to either add or remove to help drive personal efficiency and effectively relieve avoidable work stress.
For example, if you know you are not the type of person that can work in the evenings after work hours, or you are not the type of person that can take your work home to work over the weekend, it’ll be advisable to develop a system of getting your work done within office hours. Eliminating as many distractions as you can, and possibly cutting short your break period by a few minutes so all your work gets done within your working hours, are suggestions that can help.
It is important to prioritize your work - from the most important to the least important. This way, you are able to focus on the first things first and avoid an “11th hour rush” to meet the deadlines of your work.
To prioritize your work, it’s important to know your work, understand the nature of your work, along with possible deadlines attached to it. Understand those that need to get done today, those that can be carried over till the next day and still be completed, those that can be delegated to another, those that can be done alongside another etc. Avoid doing task, today. Using a priority list can help with accuracy in understanding and prioritizing your work. Discipline and faithful adherence to your priority list will go a long way.
As much as multitasking can be advantageous, maybe even advisable in circumstances where possible, it’s also important not to over-do it. This is because multitasking can potentially reduce the efficiency of your work, leaving you overwhelmed and unable to complete your tasks. You end up taking on tasks you are only able to explore halfway without completion.
So be wise in multitasking, only do it when you have to or when you have judged it convenient to do so. Try completing multiple tasks in a day, instead of at the same time. In all, minimize your multitasking.
TAKE TIME OUT TO RELAX
This might seem like an irony considering the theme of this article primarily emphasizes getting your work done howbeit with the least amount of stress. But the truth is, a sick worker is an unproductive worker. If you work and work without taking time out to relax, you end up over-exerting yourself. The result, more often than not, is a burn-out.
To avoid a burn-out, include a period of relaxation in your list of priorities, though it might be for a short period, include it still. Use the period to unwind and take some of the weight off your shoulders, so you can be strong enough to achieve more in your work. So, please remember to relax.