Whether you aspire to manage a retail establishment or work in a company’s HR department, management can be a stressful field. For this reason, managers would do well to familiarize themselves with effective stress-relief techniques. By learning about convenient ways to reduce job-related stress, you’ll be able to confidently oversee employees with a newfound sense of calm.
In addition to doing wonders for your physical health, regular exercise can go a long way in getting rid of excess stress. Being physically active stimulates neural chemicals and releases endorphins, giving stress sufferers a sense of peace and emotional stability. Virtually any form of exercise takes your mind off the stresses of the workday and re-focuses it on the movement of your body. As the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA) explains, even a light workout will leave you feeling energized and free of stress.
Even though all forms of exercise are effective at relieving stress, scientists have found that walking, jogging and aerobics are particularly potent stress killers. Because these types of workouts keep your body in constant motion, they provide powerful stimulation to the aforementioned neural chemicals. The next time you come home racked with stress, pull out your running shoes and go for a quick jog.
Have an Active Social Life.
Keeping a close-knit inner circle of friends and loved ones is a great way to send stress packing. Individuals who are frequently overcome with stress have a tendency to withdraw from people and shut themselves off from social interaction. Not surprisingly, this behavior makes the individuals feel isolated from society and ultimately serves to compound their stress.
Not only does regular social interaction help take your mind off work-related stress, it also ensures that you have people to talk to whenever you’re feeling overwhelmed. If you’re not well-versed in making friends, you can start by volunteering for a local charity or joining a club that corresponds to one of your favorite hobbies. Additionally, there is no shortage of support groups for overstressed individuals, and the people you come across at these meetings are liable to understand your situation and show you the compassion you deserve.
Engage in Breathing Exercises.
If you’ve just come home from a long day at the office and are too tired to engage in a traditional workout, give breathing exercises a try. Similar to meditation, breathing exercises are designed to clear your mind and make you feel centered. Although the exact mechanics vary from technique to technique, most breathing exercises require you to lay on your back while slowly inhaling with your nose and exhaling from your mouth.
As HelpGuide.org reports, stress experts advise people who frequently feel overwhelmed to devote at least 10 to 20 minutes a day to breathing exercises. People with chronic stress, on the other hand, should engage in these exercises for 30 minutes to one hour each day. At first, it may take a while to slip into a relaxed state, but after several weeks of practice, you’ll be able to make the transition from stressed-out to completely calm in a matter of minutes.
Take Any Opportunity to Laugh.
The adage “Laughter is the best medicine” rings true for stress sufferers. Because chronic stress causes people to focus on the negative aspects of life, those who suffer from it seldom take the time to enjoy a good chuckle. As it turns out, laughter comes with an assortment of health benefits, stress relief chief among them.
Like physical exercise, laughing releases endorphins that naturally make people feel calm. In addition, a particularly long laugh has the ability to relieve stress-induced muscle tension. Unlike stress, laughter is also good for the heart. The heightened blood vessel activity and increased blood flow caused by frequent laughter help protect your ticker from a wide range of cardiovascular problems.
Keep a Journal.
Journaling your thoughts — particularly on stress-laden days — can help calm you down and put some of your problems in perspective. In addition to improving cognitive function, keeping a journal of your thoughts can prove instrumental in identifying the root causes of your stress. By studying your journal, you’ll begin to sense patterns in the types of situations and people that trigger your stress, ultimately enabling you to devise solutions.
If not properly treated, job-related stress can chip away at your confidence and emotional stability. If you’re feeling stressed at work, don’t hesitate to address the problem. Before you know it, you’ll be managing your stress as efficiently as you manage your employees.