Got Stress? 5 Ways to Feel Calmer Quickly

5 Way to Feel Calmer Quickly

Feeling panicked and over-worked? Stressed out all the time and struggling to focus? You just described pretty much the majority of the population.

Unfortunately, being stressed and burned-out is rapidly becoming the ‘new normal’ in a world where we have too much to do and not enough time to do it in. The good news is that with the ubiquity of this issue, there is also a large array of options when it comes to treating and solving it. Here are five ways you can feel better almost instantly:

Breathe

One of the best ways to feel calmer is to breathe – deep breathing, or belly breathing – as this calms the mind and body quickly. When under stress, we often will take in short breaths which stops air flow and leads to panting and more stress. Also, cortisol is released which increases anxious feelings. Taking your breath in, using the 4-7-8 method (in slowly for a count of 4, hold for 7, then out slowly for 8) becomes an instant calmer; the more you practice, the more automatic this becomes.

Organize

You can go Marie Kondo on your home, or you can just do a little spring clean. Whichever you choose, you’ll find that having a more organized space can instantly help you to feel better about your current predicament.

It’s been said that when our space is messy or disorganized, it can lead to anxious feelings so clearing out can help you feel more in control and relaxed. If you only have five minutes, then just clear your immediate area. It’s often enough.

Eat

If you’re feeling very anxious, it might well be because you have allowed your blood sugar to drop. Something as simply as eating a meal can help to boost it back up and significantly improve your mood again. Our moods are tied extremely closely to what we eat, due to the link between our blood sugar and the release of cortisol and serotonin (the stress and feel good hormones respectively!).

There are some foods that help to regulate blood sugars and help our brain, such as fish, fruits and vegetables, turkey, and sweet potatoes. Just watch on using food as a coping skill.

Go for Walk

Walking helps to engage the ‘default mode network’ – the network of brain regions that spring into action whenever we’re not doing something highly active. The result is that your mind wanders and you feel calm and creative. Fresh air and scenic views will do the rest. A five minute spin around the block is all it takes. If you can, walk in areas with trees as they give off oxygen, which helps as a relaxer.

Meditate

Just five minutes of meditation can be more than enough to help boost your mood and help you to feel better. The aim of meditation is to calm your brain by focusing on something other than the negative thoughts you’re currently experiencing – even if that ‘something else’ happens to be nothing at all!

Meditation is not to take the thoughts away but it is geared so you don’t have to do anything about them. Just set a timer for five minutes, and make an effort to focus on the ins and outs of your breathing. It’s that easy!

Exercise

Another way that you can overcome stress and anxiety is to exercise. This stimulates the release of serotonin, not to mention being extremely good for distracting yourself!

Again, five minutes might well be enough. Just take a moment – do leg lifts in your chair, dance, push-ups, arm curls with light weights, march in place; these are all great ways to get the blood circulating and feeling better in no time.

When you start to feel stress creeping up on you, use these five methods to relax and feel better quickly; the more you keep doing them, the more mastery and good habits you will create to take back control and be able to handle those stressful days.

 

“It’s not stress that kills us, it’s our reaction to it.” (Hans Selye)

 

 

If you’re ready to get your stress under control, reach out to take back the control. We also work with leaders and teams, and do training on stress management and well-being so call today to get started (before it’s too late).

 

Understand Work Stress Burnout And Take Back Control Today

Work stress today is very prevalent at all levels; prior to the pandemic, work stress was high but, since, work stress is out of control. According to the American Institute of Stress, 80% of workers feel stress on the job. I am sure that number is higher in certain industries, such as restaurants and retail.

The effects of stress can be very detrimental to one’s health and well-being, the effects which can be long-lasting. You may be experiencing the symptoms of work stress burnout no matter your age.

Symptoms of Work Stress

In order to manage stress, you need to understand what the symptoms are before you can take control of it. The symptoms will vary by each person, but there are some general ways stress presents itself. Here are some questions to answer:

+ Are you feeling a lack of personal achievement and satisfaction at work? This is one of the early warning signs.

+ Is going to work a time-consuming drudgery and work itself a day-long bore?

+ Do you get frustrated more easily and/or getting angry with work, your coworkers, your boss or customers?

+ Do you find yourself tired, both physically and mentally?

+ Are you having frequent headaches, backaches, eye strain, or neck pain?

+ Having problems sleeping, either falling asleep or frequently waking up?

+ Are you having trouble eating – either too much, reaching for foods with sugar, or not eating a lot due to an anxious stomach?

+ Do you have racing thoughts that seem to permeate areas of your day?

+ Are you feel anxious during the day, or worry about the future? Have heart palpitations or chest pain?

 

If you answered yes to these, you’re not alone. You are experiencing the effects of stress and may be on the downhill slide to burnout.

You may not be aware of the severity of these symptoms as you may ignore them or attribute them to some external factor. But they can creep on your slowly, taking its toll on your physical and emotional health.  Others may not  understand what you are going through, as burnout is extremely personal in nature – you are having the crisis, not them.

There are emotional and physical symptoms associated with what you are going through.

Emotional symptoms of stress at work…

The emotional symptoms usually show up as the first sign of burn out. You may often feel an unrelenting stress, lack enthusiasm, have a sense of loss of control as well as experience an unexplainable grief.

You may want to blame those around you for the way you feel, but this rarely resolves the inner turmoil that you are experiencing.

In severe cases of work stress, many people experience a sense of total detachment and wanting to escape the situation; the more they have these thoughts, the more detached and shut down they can become.

This feeling often results in a loss of productivity and creativity. It also fuels negativity and cynicism, with a quickness to get angry and blame others. Over time you may find solace in detaching yourself from others by isolating from your team members; however this will not resolve the issue.

One of the biggest effects of prolonged stress is feelings of guilt and shame – this list could go on, but many feel guilty for not working as hard or contributing as their teammates, or just for not being ‘strong enough.’ These types of thoughts and feelings only add to one’s stress level, which the spiral down continues.

 

Physical Symptoms that accompany job stress…

Work stress also affects your body. The feeling of “never being able to do enough” may drive you to work extensively long hours in an effort to catch up.

Physical exhaustion may take the form of headaches, physical shaking from head to foot, inability to think clearly and being unable to relax. Pain can show up in other parts of your body, such as you neck, eyes, hips – we each hold stress in differently. You might find your hair falling out and you are more susceptible to colds and illness due to your immune system being compromised.

Physical exhaustion also causes you to lose your natural communication ability, so communication between your spouse and children, your boss or co-workers may sometimes become explosive; you might have the opposite effect with withdrawal behaviors – not speaking up, being overly agreeable despite not wanting to.

There is also the possibility of experiencing gastrointestinal problems; you may find comfort in food or alcohol as a way to cope, or you may feel an aversion to food due to a ‘nervous’ stomach.

 

Is there a solution?

Yes there is. You need to gather information and make a lifestyle change. Making the determination to deal with stress is the first step. Understanding the concept of stress, such as through the American Institute of Stress (http://www.Stress.org) will help as awareness is the key.

Another step is to be more aware of the symptoms you are experiencing, i.e. know your body. Begin to notice when you have aches and pains, when your routine veers from its normal, when you detach or become aggressive in your behaviors towards others – this is when you, then, are able to stop the feelings and learn to use good coping skills that will lesson stress and its effects.

Stress can be managed but, if you’ve been under its effects for a while, it can take time to begin to feel more relaxed and able to handle your job. Write down you stressors to see how you can go about managing them so you can enjoy your work again.

 

 

If you are having difficulty with workplace stress, reach out to get help as we have programs that can help you and your team survive and thrive so their performance, productivity, and satisfaction are at their highest. Help is available – just reach out.

How to Stand Out and Get Noticed on the Job

If you want to get ahead on the job, you will have to do more than hard work. To be honest, working hard is an expectation of employers – it’s a given. If you want to get noticed for a promotion or more challenging work, then there are other steps you can take that will move you forward and get the notice you desire.

If you’ve been in your job a while, you might feel like you’ve become part of the furniture, feeling like one in a crowd of not being acknowledged for your contributions. You might see others getting other opportunities but you are passed over.
There are a many ways, big and small, that you can do to get noticed in the office and put the “zing” back in your career:

1. Volunteer

Don’t sit back and wait to be allocated work. Volunteer for projects and become known as someone who won’t shirk responsibility.

Take the initiative and do what needs to be done, without waiting to be asked to do it. This can include serving on committees or helping out at events the company puts on/participates in. Being visible will get you noticed, not to mention showing off your skills.

2. Connect

Building relationships goes a long way in making you a familiar and likable person in the office. Make an effort to talk to people and find points of connection, whether it’s sport, pets or kids. Greet colleagues when you arrive and leave the office. Talk to people in the lunch room. Chat before meetings.

Work relationships are an important part of job satisfaction and engagement; they make coming to work more enjoyable and feeling like part of the team, both in your department and in the organization overall.

3. Be positive

Don’t be the person who always sees problems. Be the person who focuses on solutions. There will always be people who see faults or be critical. No one wants to be around a ‘Debbie-downer,’ or one others don’t want to be around.

The more positive in your outlook, which includes times when challenges arise, you will stand out by being one of the cheerleaders and a team player.

4. Steer your career

You can take control and be proactive in setting and achieving your career goals. Have a defined idea of where you want to go and when. Set your timetable for promotion and not someone else’s. You can build in skills development, networking and project positioning around your requirements as needed.
Learn all you can about the job you want so you know if your skills match and where you need to up-level them, or if any certifications are needed. Setting stretch goals for where you want to go will lead to getting them.

5. Be a good teammate

Make sure you do your best to help the team operate as one and do what needs to be done to get the job done. Help set up the room for the product launch or presentation, offer to proofread reports, and don’t talk about them behind their back. Be open and public in your support for your colleagues and your manager. Including staying late or taking over someone’s work when needed.
Think of the team’s needs – we don’t work in silos so looking at the end-result of the work will result in goal achievement and unite the team.

6. Network in good faith

Good networking is not a ruthless process of collecting people who will advance your career. Enjoy your networking by grounding it in kindness. Be nice to people because it feels good and oils the wheels of working together. Think of connecting laterally as well as upwards. You never know where colleagues or contacts will end up. They may be in a position one day to remember that you were the person who helped them clean up after a meeting or got the audiovisual equipment to work or called them a cab when they were in a hurry.

If you’re looking to transfer to a different department or move up into another role, start networking with employees in those areas, including the managers. You will not only make good connections but will be fresh on their minds when opportunities arise – you never know if you might be seeing them on the other side of an interview desk.