2020 hasn’t been short on surprises, and it also certainly hasn’t been short on stress for the majority of Americans. For those lucky enough to continue working, that work has almost definitely taken a 180 degree spin and is now very different than what it was before COVID-19 and the accompanying stay-at-home orders and similar stipulations. Maintaining a positive workplace culture in an otherwise negative time is not easy task, but it starts with managing your own stress.
Studies consistently show that taking time to destress in the middle of the day will help you focus, increase your performance both in and out of the office, and lead to a healthier mind and body. Here are a few ways to do so.
Stick to a Routine
If the coronavirus caused your work arena to change, it’s important for managing with stress to make the new normal as close to the old normal as you can. Even if you’re at home, waking up, taking a shower, putting nice clothes on, and so on can all help the psyche adjust quicker to whatever your new workplace is.
A quality diet is not only a part of maintaining your physical health, but it’s also important when keeping a positive mind. Coffee has it’s short-term effects, but a steady dose of fruits and vegetables, as well as limiting red meat (salmon is a great alternative!), can all help the mind focus more, ultimately eliminating stress.
If you have stress stemming from something outside of the workplace, one of the worst things that can happen is winding up with extra stress at work. A silver lining of the at-home workspace is an easier escape from confrontational colleagues on days you just need to finish your work so you can focus on your life issues.
Sometimes a small change in the daily swing can help it seem much less repetitive, and an easy-but-successful means of doing so lies in simply reorganizing your workspace, or even just the files and shortcuts on your desktop background. Clutter, as a whole, tends to add to stress simply due to its mere existence. A clean desk can help create a clean mind!
Give Yourself a Break
This is another task that should be simple, but in a world that demands so much from a given employee, it is not for many people. Everyone is going through some added levels of stress right now, so it’s important to take a deep breath, try meditation, look into a mirror, and tell yourself that 2020 just isn’t going to go down as the most accomplished year for most, and if you’re one of those, it’s just fine.
Some bosses don’t much care about personal issues, and if you’re in one of those situations it should be noted that many companies have leveled off regarding the new normal, and are looking for new employees. If you do have a hierarchy set up to listen, just let someone know that you’re experiencing a little more stress than normal and may have to take an hour here or there to deal with it. Ultimately, your improvements in performance once you have dealt with your stressors will make up for the time lost.
Listen to Music
Even during work, soothing music can help calm the nerves as a background entity, but being able to really sit down and focus on the sounds for 15 or 20 minutes can help you disconnect very quickly, and soothing music is available all over YouTube.
Stress will always come and go, and it’s important to confront it early. With these tips, and others, you can certainly expedite the process of a current wave of stress going away, but repetiton can help keep it away!