When you’re having a particularly high-stress day at work (or maybe that’s every day), sometimes you just have to take a minute to do something for yourself.
It’s OK to stop and breathe.
Deep down you might even the chaos because, well, a job without a challenge can be terribly boring. But in order for you to handle your high-stress job in the best way possible, sometimes you need to just take a minute to regroup.
There are several things you can start doing to help you find peace at work both in the short and long term:
1. Take a Deep Breath
It’s more effective than you might think. HelpGuide.org says taking a few minutes to inhale and exhale deeply slows down your heart rate and helps you relax. In fact, there are stress hormones in your body that can be removed by deep breathing exercises. Take breaths when you can, for instance, pause and breathe before you answer that next phone call.
Here’s a breathing exercise you can do right now:
Keep your spine straight throughout the movement. Inhale as you sweep your arms up and exhale as you return them to your sides. Do a total of 5 repetitions.*
2. Write Down your Frustrations
You can’t let go of your stress if you keep it bottled in your mind. Whether it’s anannoyingly competitive coworker or looming deadlines that are bothering you, don’t let your woes bubble up to the point of explosion. Writing down exactly how you feel is one way to unload your frustrations, do something about them and move on.
3. Go for a Jog
It’s the single best way for your body to produce endorphins and significantly reduce your stress level, according to the experts at MayoClinic.com. It may be tough at first, but try to incorporate at least 30 minutes of physical activity daily after or before work.
Have you tried hitting the gym during your lunch hour (or even just a walk around the parking lot)? You’ll come back and finish off your day refreshed, rejuvenated and less stressed. Just remember to take a quick shower afterwards!
4. Practice Minimalism
“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated” – Confucius
One self-management technique that can also help minimize stress is to try to stop over thinking things. If you have a presentation coming up, you’ll find that if you stick to the bare bones and make your points as concisely as possible, then your colleagues will understand the information much easier — making your presentation more effective.
5. Go to Your Happy Mental Place
For about 60 seconds, stop, close your eyes, and focus all of your five senses to visualize a place that makes you happy. According to HelpGuide.org, visualization is a great way to “activate your body’s natural relaxation response.” Vividly think about what you’re, seeing, smelling, tasting, feeling and hearing. Then, open your eyes and come back to reality rejuvenated.
6. Try Yoga
This ancient art is meant to increase your self-discipline and push the limits of your determination. By concentrating all of your attention on Yoga poses, you’re able to rid your mind of worries and become more balanced in mind, body and soul.
Best of all, you don’t necessarily have to sign up for classes. Grab a mat after work and check out hundreds of useful Yoga videos with which you can follow along.