Work Related Stress
Historically, work-related stress was perceived to be a problem only in jobs with high pressure and low pay, such as teaching and social services. Today, this is no longer the case; work-related stress has become a factor in most every type of job, including fast food, retail sales, law enforcement, and healthcare just to name a few.
Nowadays, we spend more time at work than any other single place outside of the home. Therefore, it would make sense that the content of our work, our work environment, and the people with whom we work, combined in various ways, can add a significant amount of stress to our lives.
Many of us have become so accustomed to being in a permanent “fast-forward” mode; we do not even realize how much stress we have or the effect it has on us. Apart from physical problems, work-related stress can lead to poor job performance, job dissatisfaction, accidents on the job, job loss, problems at home and violence.
Many different situations can contribute to work related stress.
One example is a situation or person at work with whom you have no control. Some individuals have coworkers who are difficult to get along with. These individuals fail to realize that they have no control over the personalities of a colleague or a supervisor.
Technology overload: We are all linked to email, voice mail, faxes, pagers, and cell phones in some way, which make us all too accessible. Information comes too fast and some cannot keep up.
Doing more with less: For instance, downsizing, layoffs and changes in the business environment require many employees to do more or reduce access to needed resources, adding pressure to their lives.
Changes at the workplace: This problem has been proven to be a major factor in work-related stress. Change is scary, especially at work. Situations that are new and/or unclear can create intense anxiety at any level. Even positive experiences (such as a promotion) at work can be stressful.
Trying to live up to expectations: Often we have unrealistic expectations of others and ourselves. We want to set goals that help us and others succeed, however setting them too high only sets us up for failure.
It is important to understand that although you may not be able to eliminate all work-related stress, you can manage it better at work. Here are some practical things you can do to lower your stress level: