There is no denying that the modern world, for all its advancement and comforts, has brought with it an epidemic of work-related stress. Andin a strange irony, this has often happened precisely because of the technology which has been designed to make things easier.
Most of this technology has been communication or information technology and it includes all the things that have made remote working possible and brought about the ability to work on the go.
We now have access to detailed documents wherever we are, we can be contacted with similar ease, and there is now much software and devices that allow work to be carried out on the go. All of this has made work more effective and flexible, but it has also made it harder to get away from.
And that is the crux of the problem. It is becoming harder and harder to strictly delineate and work time and leisure. This is something of a disaster because it is making precisely that distinction that is necessary for alleviating work stress.
This point is well-illustrated when we consider individuals with ADHD. For such people, the feeling of becoming overwhelmed is the number one symptom, and working life seems to engender precisely this feeling (even in people without ADHD) more than it ever has in the past. Next Level Daily, a company producing daily planners, say that this is precisely why products like their high-performance planner for ADHD sufferers is so important if those with the condition are going to navigate working life.
The Dangers of Burnout
The thing about work stress is that it is sneaky. We often don’t think about daily work stress very much, but we’ve all heard of burnout. Burnout is the result of an extended period of stressful work, and most people do not even realize it is a risk until it happens.
Exhaustion, mood disorders, and sleep problems are the symptoms of burnout, and they are the type of symptoms that might make further work impossible, thereby only adding to the stress.
Accordingly, it is wise to recognize the indications of burnout and to stop it ever happening in the first place. One of the ways you can manage this is to minimize the amount of unnecessary stress in your working day.
Tips for Handling Work Stress
Coping with modern working life, therefore, is about doing away with this unnecessary stress. It is inevitable that there will be stressful elements of any job, but it is more about stopping that becoming prolonged. Here follows some tips:
Track Your Stressors
Everybody is different, and it’s particularly important to work out what it is about a particular job that is making you stressed. Perhaps leaving work till the last minute is something that stresses you, perhaps it is the lack of clear plan at the outset. These are both things to track and do something about.
Develop Health Responses
Do yoga, go for a run, exercise in the gym or even just chill out with a movie. Just as there are things which will stress you more than others, there will be things that particularly help with stress. It is important to identify these.
Establish Digital Boundaries
Just because you can be contacted at any time of day or night doesn’t mean that you should always respond. You should work out what your boundaries are and refuse all communication from work outside of them.
Managing stress isn’t a quick fix, it’s about handling the level of stress that comes with your job. That depends very much on the job – and it depends very much on you.