A noisy office, coworkers who don’t read emails, and bosses who like to micromanage—small, unpleasant experiences at work can add up and take their toll on you. When you find yourself dreading every work day, it’s a blaring sign that you’re stressed and need to decompress. Don’t wait until you get to that point. There are many things you can do to manage your stress levels and avoid breaking down. If you’re having a stressful day at work now, try doing these activities to help alleviate the tension and get yourself through the day.
Go Out for a Walk in the Park
The Japanese have this practice they call shinrin-yoku, which roughly translates to “taking in the forest atmosphere” or “forest bathing.” So what does this have to do with you being stressed at work? Well, forest bathing is known for several scientifically proven benefits; one of which is reducing stress and boosting the mood.
If you’re getting bombarded left and right at work, take a break, go out to the nearest park, and just walk around for a few minutes. Let the greens and fresh air soothe you and relax your mind so that you can return to work with better focus and renewed energy. This can be so peaceful after a stressful day at work.
Enjoy a Warm Cup of Tea
Take a page from the Brits and almost all the Asian population. Happy? Celebrate with a delicious cup of tea. Sad? Nestle in bed with a warm cuppa. Stressed? Enjoy a relaxing cup of fine-grade matcha green tea.
Almost every situation can get better when you have tea to enjoy. That said, if you’re having an unpleasant day at work, brew yourself a warm cup of tea, find a quiet place, and savor your tea. It won’t take away all the stress, but you’re guaranteed to feel just a little better after.
Your beverage of choice doesn’t have to be tea (although it does have tons of physical and mental health benefits). It can be any drink—coffee, milk, or fruit juice—that you like and works as a pick-me-up for you.
Listen to Your Favorite Playlist
Another great way to deal with a stressful day at work is to listen to music. Music has been tested and proven to have tremendous effects on the mind and body. It can energize, soothe, and influence a person’s mood. Music also helps reduce stress. Listening to music can take your mind off something that’s stressing you out, divert your attention, and help you manage your feelings.
Alternatively, listening to certain types of music, like classical music, can also direct your attention to help you focus better. That’s why you should never leave home without your noise-cancelling headphones to listen anytime to your favorite playlist.
Take a Catnap
Sometimes, your brain and your body just need a few minutes to shut down and rest to help deal with the rest of the day. The best way to get that is to take an undisturbed catnap. The perfect, restful nap should only last 20 minutes. Any more and you’ll enter deep sleep, which should last 7 to 9 hours to be restful. If you nap beyond the recommended time and wake up after a few minutes, you’ll feel tired and cranky instead of rested and relaxed
One way to maximize the effect of your nap is to drink coffee right before you sleep. You should be quick to not let the caffeine kick in; otherwise, you won’t be able to sleep. You’ll be twice energized when you wake up.
Talk to a Friend
There’s time to be alone and time to be together with people. The key is finding balance. You can spend quality alone time to meditate and process your thoughts and feelings. However, when you’re feeling down and insecure, what you need are love and support from your family or friends.
If you’re overwhelmed by things at work, don’t bottle up your thoughts and feelings. Talk to your friends, and they can help you process everything and give you a boost. Sometimes, people only need support and encouragement to get over negative experiences and overcome difficulties.
People must have a certain amount of stress to be motivated to do things, but stress shouldn’t be left to accumulate. If you don’t take breaks and push yourself beyond the threshold, you will break sooner or later.
Forgive yourself, and take care of your health. Yes, your job is important, but you won’t be able to continue working if you’re always getting sick and if your psychological health is unstable. Try one or two of the activities above whenever you feel overwhelmed at work or anywhere. Take time to relax, heal, and reenergize your tired mind and body.
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