Stress Awareness Month has been held every April since 1992, to increase and share knowledge about the causes and cures for our modern stress epidemic.
Stress Awareness Month is dedicated time for open conversations on stress, and its impacts and effects; and to open up about mental and emotional states with friends, families, colleagues, and professionals.
Stress and poor mental health are one of the biggest public health challenges. There is no health without mental health, and stress can lead to numerous problems, both inside and outside of work.
Why is this important?
Stress in the workplace can affect every aspect of an organisation, from sickness rates to colleague relationships. For an individual in the workplace, there will be negative changes occurring over a period of time which can be physical, emotional, behavioural, or a combination of all three.
Looking at an organisation as a whole, there are also signs that a workforce is stressed. This can look like:
- High staff turnover.
- Increased absenteeism and sickness levels.
- Long-hours work culture.
- Employees not taking full holiday entitlement.
- Low productivity and efficiency.
What can be done about this?
We’d like to share tips for individuals to help manage stress at work:
- Talk about stress and its effects – work together to reduce the stigma that is associated with stress by talking about the topic openly and freely with friends, family and colleagues.
- Share coping mechanisms – if something has worked for you, why not share it? It could benefit someone you care about, and in the meantime, it might help take the focus off your own challenges.
- Be kind to those who are stressed and anxious – we are all undoubtedly going to experience stress and anxiety in our lifetime, so treat others going through it with compassion and empathy.
- Look after yourself – we all need to think more about self–care. Take time out of your day to relax or do something that you enjoy. Don’t forget to exercise and eat well, even when you feel stressed.
- The Stress Management Society is running a 30-Day challenge. It takes 30 days to turn actions into habits, so this challenge will maximise chances of turning useful knowledge and techniques into positive behavioural change, which you can implement in all areas of life. Click here to access free resources for the 30-Day Challenge, including a Daily De-Stressing Planner, a Stress Guide, 7 Steps Achievement Plan, and useful infographics on stress.
Other ways for individuals to help manage the feeling of stress
- Create a clear and sustainable balance between work and home life.
- Put time aside for exercise each day, no matter how small.
- Practice meditation, mindfulness, or yoga, when able.
- Connect with family and friends outside of work.
- Prioritise sleep.
Here, senior employees can find links to a comprehensive range of solutions designed to improve staff and colleague wellbeing. A healthy workforce is a more productive workforce!
For more information about Stress Awareness Month, click here.