Whether you’re among the 42% of Americans working from home or are still working in a traditional office setting, there’s no doubt that you experience stress in the course of a typical workday.
And you’ve probably experienced firsthand the damage that stress can do to your mental and physical health. From headaches to lethargy to digestive problems and chest pain, stress is one of the toughest things our bodies can go through.
This is why it’s so important to learn how to stay calm at work. Because stress at work doesn’t only affect your health during the workday but can have lasting effects throughout the rest of your day and week as well.
To learn how to remain calm at work and in doing so improve your health, just keep reading!
Improve Your Diet
You might be thinking, what does diet have to do with stress? Well, everything. Your diet has a greater effect on how you feel throughout the day than anything else. And a nutritious diet will help you feel positive and calm.
You need to eat intentionally. This means only eating foods that will make a positive impact on your health. Try to fill your diet with as many fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins as possible. Then supplement with healthy fats and carbohydrates.
If you’re concerned that there are holes in your diet, you can shop for supplements to boost your nutrition. Just keep in mind that these are meant to supplement an already healthy diet, not replace it completely.
Get Enough Sleep
Many of us, especially those of us trying to balance our work and home lives, tend to neglect sleep. But good sleep is paramount to good health. Without it, we can’t hope to feel our best, let alone avoid becoming overwhelmed when stressful situations present themselves.
Those of working age, between the ages of 18 and 64, should be getting 7-9 hours of restful, high-quality sleep per night. A lack of sleep will leave you feeling frazzled and irritable. In short, you’ll be at breaking point before your day even starts.
To maximize the amount of time you spend in deep sleep (the most restorative portion of the sleep cycle), be sure to practice a nighttime routine that promotes rest. Stop drinking caffeine in the early afternoon, put screens away an hour or two before bedtime, and make your room as dark and peaceful as possible.
Among the long list of health benefits attainable through regular exercise, physical activity is an excellent tool for reducing stress and anxiety. Aim for intentional exercise 5 days a week, but make a point to move a little every day.
Physical activity causes the release of serotonin, the feel-good hormone, in your body. It also reduces the stress hormone cortisol, giving you an extra pep in your step while melting away the anxieties of the day.
Taking a walk during your lunch break is a simple but highly effective way to relieve yourself of any stress that may have built up in the morning hours. You should be getting up and walking away from your desk every couple of hours anyway, why not enjoy the sunshine and fresh air while you do so?
So, you’re eating well, exercising every day after work, and getting restful sleep every night. These will all work wonders on your mental health, but to truly achieve calmness under pressure, you need to practice mindfulness as well.
Take time every day to meditate, practice yoga, or write in a gratitude journal. And when you feel yourself becoming stressed, it’s a good idea to have a few tools in your arsenal, ready to go. You can practice some deep breathing techniques, or shut your office door and meditate for a few minutes.
Yoga is something you’ll likely need to do on your own time unless you work from home. But meditation, deep breathing, and taking a moment to remind yourself of what you’re grateful for in life can be done anywhere.
Shift Your Mindset
Perhaps the best way to deal with stress at work is to learn how to shift your mindset. So often do we get so wrapped up in a stressful moment that we forget it’s just that – a moment. It will pass, and when it does, it won’t matter anymore.
When you encounter a stressful situation at work, ask yourself these questions. Will this matter next week? Next month? Next year?
It almost certainly won’t even matter the next day. Instead of agonizing over the little things, take a deep breath and remind yourself that it isn’t worth losing your hair over.
Don’t Demand Perfection
There’s nothing wrong with wanting to deliver your best effort to everything you do in life. That’s a terrific trait to have, in fact. But there’s a difference between demanding your best and demanding perfection.
No one is perfect, and sometimes even your best effort will fall short. And that’s okay! Instead of beating yourself up over a lack of perfection, remember that perfection is unattainable. To expect it from yourself or anyone else is unfair and will always lead to stress and disappointment.
Learn How to Stay Calm at Work to Improve Your Productivity and Overall Health
Stressful situations are unavoidable, especially during the workday. But if you use these tips for how to stay calm at work, you can breeze right through them instead of allowing them to weigh you down.
Remember, the key to living stress-free is to prioritize health. This means eating right, exercising often, and not taking your mental health for granted.
Looking for more tips on staying healthy and making the most out of your workday? Be sure to check out our blog!