Of course work is stressful, but too much stress can decrease performance and productivity. It’s important to identify the sources of stress at work and do what you can to resolve them.
The first step is simply understanding what’s causing all the stress to begin with. We can help! Below are five of the most common sources of stress and how to avoid them.
Sources of Stress at Work
When you stress out at work it’s a lot harder to get things done. And that stress doesn’t necessarily stay behind at work.
Many people allow the stress of work to flow over into their personal lives. This can cause anxiety, depression, and trouble sleeping among other things.
Being happy at work means being more productive. Take action to be happier and more productive by reading through some common sources of stress:
1. High Workloads
This can mean high volumes of work, unrealistic deadlines, and any other pressure that makes people feel rushed or overwhelmed.
When you are stressed about all the work you have to do, you’re less likely to be productive.
Be open with management about your workload. Discuss a timeline and workload that you feel comfortable with and bring up unrealistic deadlines where appropriate.
2. Poor Management
Poor management can leave employees feeling like they don’t have any support or direction. And how’s anyone supposed to get work done if their leaders aren’t leading?
Forty-six percent of employees rarely or never leave a meeting knowing what they’re supposed to do next. Communication will help.
Again, be transparent with management. Talk to your managers first directly and express how you feel. Then, if necessary, talk to other managers and let them weigh in on how you should handle your situation.
3. A Lack of Control
Sometimes it feels like work is something you take control of. Sometimes it feels like some kind of mandatory servitude.
This lack of control can bum you down and make it feel like there’s little place to go from here. Know that you are always in control!
Speaking up and taking action to improve work responsibilities looks really good to management. If they don’t appreciate it, and if you truly know there are few opportunities left, take control and look for other work.
4. Not Enough Work
Small workloads can sometimes make people feel like their skills aren’t being used like they should. Maybe your bosses and supervisors don’t know what you’re capable of.
Remind them of your talents and show them new projects you’ve come up with. Look at the present problems the company is facing and provide creative solutions (even if it isn’t expected of you).
Taking initiative could show them that you deserve more work.
Direction and leadership are good. Micro-managing is very bad. Management might think that peering over shoulders and scrutinizing reports is productive.
But really, it isn’t.
Keep track of moments when you feel like you’re being micro-managed. Reflect to see if there is unclear communication between you and management. Maybe you’ll find out it’s just how your boss behaves (that isn’t an excuse, though).
Let them know that it’s hindering work performance and putting you in a constantly uncomfortable position.
The best ways to handle stress is to understand where it’s coming from and to communicate your feelings when you can.