One in five Australians aged between 16-85 experience a mental illness throughout their lives, with anxiety and depression at the most common. It’s no shock then, that work productivity suffers as a result of this. What causes workplace stress? How workplaces can identify signs of stress. Deadlines, lack of sleep, high expectations and pressure (often pressure put on by the person suffering) have seen a rise in workplace anxiety and it doesn’t stop there. Unfortunately, many people don’t realise just how much of an effect their mental health is having on their productivity at work, or their lives.
How can workplace stress be defined?
A feeling of being under too much mental or emotional pressure at work is called workplace stress.
When you are unable to cope with pressure, it becomes a source of stress. There are various ways in which people react to stress, so a situation that appears stressful to one person may act as a motivator for another.
Why do we get stressed? It’s hard to deal with work demands, pressure at work, and bullying and harassment. If you are stressed, you may not be able to meet these demands successfully, or even perform your tasks properly.
In addition to affecting how you feel, think and behave, stress can also affect the way your body works. There are a number of symptoms of stress, including sleeping difficulties, sweating, weight loss, difficulty concentrating, and loss of appetite.
Your thoughts might race, you may worry constantly or you might feel low in self-esteem. You may feel tense, frustrated, or low in self-esteem. Your temper may become more easily lost, you may drink more, or you may act out of character.
Additionally, you might get headaches, muscle pain, or dizziness.
So, how do you fight workplace stress and ensure that your employees enjoy their time at your company?
First of all, there is no need to spend millions of dollars on identifying stress causes, signs of stress, and improving the work life experience of your employees. Here are a few steps that can be taken both at work and in the home environment, designed to help reduce stress levels, improve workplace productivity and boost morale.
Creating a solid sleep routine is highly important when it comes to reducing stress levels. Whilst asleep, the body repairs itself from the stressors of the day, which is why good quality sleep is just as important as getting at least 7-8 hours a night. Turn off all electronics at least an hour before you attempt to sleep as melatonin (the body’s sleep hormone) struggles to kick in whilst you’re using phones, laptops and watching TV. Why is a lack of sleep so detrimental to your workplace productivity? Being sleep deprived leaves more room for mistakes, concentration levels and clear thinking, in turn causing anxiety and stress when you don’t feel you’re achieving your tasks. We have elearning, onsite and online workplace fatigue management training programs. We are providing our workplace fatigue management training programs across Australia
Healthy Gut, Healthy Mind
Food is your friend. Food is fuel! Recent studies show a massive connection between the gut and the brain, it’s little wonder that a poor diet can cause all sorts of stresses. Stomach-related issues such as IBS, constipation and leaky gut can cause serious issues with the way your brain functions, leaving you easily irritated, with a foggy mind and potentially, depression. If you supply food and snacks to your employees, think about what you’re fuelling them with. Swap chips, lollies, and chocolate for fruit, nuts, and wholemeal food snacks, sure to leave them satisfied, without the stomach ache.
A Positive Office Dynamic
Fatigue and stress management can certainly be managed at home, but a positive office atmosphere is something everyone should look forward to when they leave their house in the morning. Ensure that people feel like a team, as well as feeling supported by their managers. The way that your team members interact with each other and their superiors have a massive impact on stress levels, identifying signs and causes of stress and of course, their long-term productivity.
Simple things including office yoga, workouts, mental health days, outdoor meetings, rewards for achievements, and team lunches make for a happier, healthier, and more productive workforce.
Start Managing Workplace Stress Today.