Reduce your stress during 'Stress Awareness Month'

Since 1992, Stress Awareness Month has been observed every April to promote understanding of the causes and remedies for the stress crisis that plagues our modern world. This is a valuable occasion to discuss the impact of stress and combat the shame, stigma, and guilt often associated with mental health. It provides an opportunity to openly discuss stress and its consequences, and share our mental and emotional states with trusted individuals such as family members, friends, co-workers, or professionals.

In support of Stress Awareness Month we’ve collated nine tips to help you manage stress in your lives. These practical and effective strategies will hopefully help you cope with the negative effects that stress can cause, and improve your overall well-being.

1.         Prioritize your workload:

Feeling overwhelmed with tasks can cause significant stress. Prioritizing your work, breaking down tasks into smaller steps, and setting achievable goals can help reduce the feeling of being overwhelmed and improve productivity.

2.         Take regular breaks:

It's essential to take regular breaks throughout the day to recharge and avoid burnout. Even a short walk, stretching, or deep breathing exercises can help you relax and return to your work with renewed energy.

3.         Maintain a healthy work-life balance:

Separating work and personal life is crucial to reduce stress levels. Dedicate time to hobbies, physical exercise, or self-care activities to maintain balance and avoid overworking.

4.         Connect with supportive colleagues or mentors:

Finding support from co-workers or mentors can help alleviate stressors in the workplace. Having someone to talk to can help provide perspective, problem-solving strategies, and reduce feelings of isolation.

5.         Practice mindfulness and meditation techniques:

Taking a few minutes to focus on your breath or engage in guided meditation can help calm your mind and reduce anxiety. Mindfulness techniques have been shown to improve concentration, reduce stress levels, and enhance well-being.

6.         Exercise regularly:

Exercise is an effective way to reduce stress. Regular physical activity releases endorphins, which can boost mood and energy levels, and reduce anxiety and depression.

7.         Organise your workspace:

Keep a clean and organized workspace to reduce visual clutter and distractions: A cluttered workspace can be overwhelming and contribute to feelings of stress. Keeping your workspace clean and organized can help reduce visual clutter and distractions, making it easier to focus on work tasks.

8.         Take care of your physical health:

Make sure you look after your physical health by eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, and staying hydrated. Your physical health can greatly impact your mental and emotional well-being, so it's important to take care of your body.

9.         Seek professional help:

If you're experiencing significant mental or emotional distress due to workplace stress, seeking professional help can be hugely beneficial. A therapist or counsellor can help you develop coping strategies, manage stress and anxiety, and improve your overall mental health.

From time to time we all need to take a moment to evaluate our stress levels, happiness levels and priorities in life, and make a few changes to try and achieve a healthy balance. Just making a few tweaks here and there is sometimes all we need to reduce the stress we feel, however, if that doesn’t work then no-one should ever feel ashamed to reach out for help. Help to deal with stress is only a click away and can make all the difference to your life.

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3rd April