There is a saying that “The more tranquil a man becomes, the greater is his success, his influence and his power for good. The calmness of mind is one of the beautiful jewels of wisdom.” Regrettably, this is never an easy mission to accomplish in the workplace. Whether it is dealing with deadlines, nasty emails, criticisms or hearing gossip about another person, it seemingly doesn't end during a work week. Stress reduction is an important element in keeping your anxiety down to a minimum. Baylor College of Medicine in Houston said that anxiety can start to take on a life of its own at work or in your personal life if it's not dealt with. "Everything becomes a potential crisis. The unthinkable has happened. So around every corner, there's the next possible disaster." We need to devise a practical plan if we want to reach a state of calmness during any battle at work. Here are 7 ways to get you started.
Start exercising.Finding an outlet for your stress can help you become calmer at work. According to a New York Times article, exercise could be the answer based on a study conducted by Princeton University. "Rats placed on a running regimen produced a large number of new neurons specifically designed to release the neurotransmitter GABA that inhibits brain activity, keeping other (stress) neurons from firing easily." The new neurons are designed to help the brain calm down as it did in the animal study. Find an exercise that will help your stress. You can start walking, swimming, jogging or biking to help allow those new neurons to go to work for you.
Take a break.Make time to walk away from the pressures and the stress. You need alone time and a chance to settle your mind as you can't fight battles every day and expect to be feeling energized. Take a few minutes and focus on your breath to calm the body down. See yourself letting go of the stress through exhalation. You can try connecting with nature during a lunch break to take a pause. This means walk away from your desk when you hit a mental wall.
Manage your emotions.In order to master your emotions and to not act in haste, you need to know what sets you off. "Chances are, most of the things that irk you are of a recurring nature—they're a catalyst or a trigger that gets your adrenaline going. So start by raising your self-awareness in this crucial area, because self-awareness precedes self-management," President and Founder, Clarion Enterprises wrote. You can start recording your feelings on paper or drive to the nearest Starbucks before a knee-jerk reaction bubbles up. If you can find a coping mechanism to deal with your emotions, it will help when you're ready to fire off an angry email to someone at the office.
Set boundaries.Be honest about your expectations at work. For example, maybe you're doing people's jobs for them and this is draining you. You need to set boundaries with this person to prevent it from burning you out. Some people don't need to be told to back off, but there are those who you need to set boundaries with to preserve your sanity. This includes putting the breaks on friends, family and others, who can be draining. "Boundaries aren’t just a sign of a healthy relationship; they’re a sign of self-respect. So give yourself permission to set boundaries and work to preserve them," Associate Editor at Psych Central Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S shared. Just because you are in the workplace, doesn't suggest that boundaries are not necessary.
Stop perfection.You’re not perfect and that’s okay as everyone has their weaknesses. We try to cover this up at work to prevent us from looking weak, but by keeping up false appearances, the more stressful situations become. If you are a person who becomes mad at yourself for making a mistake, you are aiming for perfection. Practice tuning the negative chatter from others or from yourself by practicing meditation, prayer, listening to music or reading something that will occupy you.
Let it go.If you are feeling crushed at work because someone didn't invite you to lunch, let this go and be done with it. Look at the bigger picture that you won't be with these people forever and you will be moving on to other opportunities. This will reset your mind to let petty things and the bigger things go because you can't control the environment. Psychology Today explained: "You need to make the commitment to let it go. If you don’t make this conscious choice up-front, you could end up self-sabotaging any effort to move on from this past hurt."
Have fun.Dwelling on your thoughts all day will not keep you calm. Play music or listen to tracks that play the sounds of nature. You can also find time to laugh during the day, even if you have to force it. Start allowing yourself to laugh more by listening to a comedy or think of something funny that happened over the weekend. Text a good friend to help alleviate your stress as this is helpful.
Don't allow work to become a place you regret going to every day as it impacts your health and your overall mental well-being. Choose to be calm and let things go and have a little fun to help with the stress.