Reduce your workplace anxiety today
Written by listed counsellor/psychotherapist: Graeme Orr MBACP(Accred), UKRCP Reg. Ind. Counsellor
1st February, 20180 Comments
Many people have anxiety in or because of their working environment. Overcoming this can feel like an overwhelming task, especially when you need the job for financial security. Yet it is possible to manage your anxiety in the workplace with these simple ideas:
Look for support
Having support can make a huge difference. It could be that your team or your co-worker can be that listening ear for you when anxiety is at its strongest. If you are not close to co-workers perhaps family or friends can help. Both can offer you the opportunity to look at and challenge anxious thoughts and feelings you have about your work and your workplace.
Manage your thought process
Often anxiety starts with unhelpful thoughts which prove difficult to shift. It can be helpful to learn to challenge these thoughts in a systematic way. Look at the likelihood of the thought coming true. Do you have the evidence to support that? Perhaps you are making assumptions or indulging in fortune telling. Anxiety often makes us look down the negative pathway.
In today’s office culture, most people work through the day. We eat at our desks and it can be easy to forget to take breaks. Yet pausing throughout the day can make a big difference. Stopping even for a few moments to release the tension in your neck and shoulders and taking some deep breaths helps to release some of the stress and anxiety and help you continue. You could also take a break at lunchtime and think about going for a short walk.
Exercise before or after work
Exercise is an effective way of managing anxiety, as it can help reduce stress through the day. After work exercise releases endorphins, the body’s own feel good chemicals, which reduces the stress hormones.
Talk to your employer
It is important to realise as many as one in eight workers in the UK suffer anxiety in the workplace. Your employer has a duty of care and most employers will recognise that helping an employee benefits both of you. Try to be specific about the problems that you are having so that any reasonable changes are identified to help you. For example being able to take a ten-minute break if you feel stressed or changing your hours to be able to get away for childcare.
Many employers offer support schemes that offer employees benefits such as counselling to help them tackle anxiety. You may find this useful.
It is important to realise that many people suffer from anxiety in the workplace. It can be treated successfully and many decide to use talking therapies to make a real difference.
About the author
Graeme is a counsellor and author, living and working on the south side of Glasgow. In his practice, he sees a number of clients with emotional, anxiety and self-esteem that have relevance to us all. His articles are based on that experience and are offered as an opportunity to identify with, or to challenge you to make changes in your life.
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