Work related stress is growing day by day, more so for entrepreneurs, who juggle multiple tasks and multiple roles all the time. Further, mental stress can manifest itself in many physical ailments like stomach ailments, migraine, ulcers, etc. So how does one handle stress and find a balance which is manageable ? What should you do and what should you avoid to make life stress free ? Here are 6 pointers which may be useful :
1. Express yourself : Whenever you feel stressed, talk to your colleagues or your boss or your subordinates. Mention what is causing the stress and how you would like to relieve it. Communication can go a long way to reduce stress, since exchange of ideas acts as a buffer and puts some perspective in how you perceive stuff which gives you stress in the first place. If you can’t talk, just try and put things down on paper and get it out of your system.
2. Break projects down into smaller parts : Large projects look very much insurmountable when you look at them in the beginning. Breaking them down into smaller parts / steps makes them easy to attempt and get started. Once you see and attempt one step at a time, it is not so overwhelming, and you may not even realize what you are doing till such time you have completed it !
3. Prioritize : The 80-20 principle always works ! If you can identify those 20% tasks which make 80% impact, attack them first. This way, your priorities are taken care of and if those unimportant tasks get left out, it just does not matter ! “Tomorrow is another day!”
4. Learn to say no : Many a times, stress is caused by one’s inability to say no to a client or a colleague. Unreasonable expectations of what you’re capable of accomplishing are a huge source of stress–regardless of whether those expectations come from yourself, from your boss, or from your customers.The more you take up, the higher the pressure to get it done. Identify situations when you should be able to say no and bring the pressure down on yourself. Stop thinking of yourself as a super-hero and learn to say no sometimes.
5. Create your own space : In the past, people worked 9 to 5; in today’s business environments, there’s pressure to work (or at least be available) 24/7. That pressure generates lots of stress. You could easily shut down your computer and mobile phone during lunch hour. Spend this personal time reading something you like (updates on your hobbies) or talking to your colleagues or just cracking silly jokes ! You can also try shutting down your computer for a couple of hours before and after sleep. Nothing is going to be lost and the gains will be immense.
6. Ignore the Uncontrollable : There are always events that you simply can’t control: the economy, traffic, politics, other people’s emotions, customer decisions, and so forth. Worrying about stuff you can’t control isn’t going to make an iota of difference either in the short or the long run. It’s wasted energy and extra stress you don’t need. Change what you can change and shrug off what you can’t.
Ultimately, stress is your individual response to situations rather than the situation itself. So, if you are determined that your response will be balanced, reasonable, practical and humorous, you need not worry about stress for the rest of your life !
E-Series Yazdi Tantra