One of the greatest risks that job stress causes in our lives is its potential to have a negative effect on our mental health. These high levels of job stress can cause workers to take more time off from work. Stress interferes with productivity, and in some cases, it can cause people to develop physical ailments such as headaches, fatigue and higher blood pressure readings.
Preserving physical health is one of the keys to preserving mental health. The two have a reciprocal relationship. Plus, the combined physical and mental effects of stress can put individuals at increased risks and complications of heart disease.
Study on Job Stress
In Sweden, twelve thousand workers were analyzed to gather data on how job stress affected work. Researchers followed these twelve thousand workers for a period of five years. In that five year time span, about eight percent of workers had to take leave due to mental health conditions. Of the people who took mental health sick leave, three quarters were female workers.
Who is At the Greatest Risk?
People who have very demanding jobs are at the highest risk of developing mental health issues due to the stress of their jobs. Even jobs that people love can be overwhelming. The threat of closures, layoffs and other job insecurities have shown increased risk factors in pulse, blood pressure, accidents and workplace injuries.
People who lead unhealthy lifestyles are also at a greater risk of developing mental health issues, as well as those who do not have a social or familial support network and those who smoke tobacco products.
Being physically active seems to reduce the impact that job stress has on your mental health. Developing an exercise routine that helps you to stay active is the first step to feeling better overall. At least thirty minutes of physical activity, five days per week, is recommended. Often, making one little change in your life will have a chain reaction effect and help you take care of other aspects of life.
Also, it is helpful to change eating habits. Consuming more high-fat, high-sugar and high-carbohydrate foods works with job stress to inflict greater damage. Eating more fruits and vegetables in as close to their natural form as possible is extremely beneficial. It is important to note that over-cooking and over-processing foods can reduce the food’s health benefits.
Mostly, finding a support network both in the office and at home cannot be overstated. Talk to someone about what causes the most stress at work. Find a friend, family member or coworker to talk to.
Other people do not need to solve your problems; they only need to be able to listen to what is bothering you. Management and other leaders at work should be able to help by developing ways that employees can interact with one another for the purpose of reducing stress.
Adopting a pet is also part of a home support network that helps stress at work. Providing love and nurturing for a pet can relieve many stresses at the end of the day. Sitting with an animal, petting them, taking them for walks and talking to them is good for both you and the animals.
In tandem with creating your own support networks, it is of the utmost importance to offer to be a part of others’ support networks as well. It creates more group security. The reciprocal relationship of people helping each other creates a calmer, balanced and supportive workplace which improves everyone’s health.
How Do You Deal With Job Stress?
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