Nearly everyone who has ever held a job has experienced work stress related problems at some time. There are many aspects of a job that can cause stress; whether you are struggling to meet a deadline, trying to make payroll, or coping with a difficult boss or co-worker, there are plenty of opportunities to experience workplace tension. What many people do not realize is that stress is the body’s natural reaction to a dangerous or life-threatening situation. When faced with danger, the brain triggers the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline; these chemical messengers signal the heart to beat faster and the lungs to draw in more oxygen. The majority of the blood flow is routed to the large muscle groups to prepare the body to fight off an attacker or run, and the adrenaline provides a rush of energy and dulls any sensation of pain. While this reaction is appropriate as a short-term response to real danger or to an urgent situation, when work stress related problems are ongoing, chronic stress can cause physical and emotional damage. With constant stress, the body is unable to return to its normal resting state, eventually resulting in stress-related illness.
How can work and stress affect my emotional health? Constant stress in the workplace eventually takes a toll on your emotional health by depleting the neurotransmitters that regulate thought and mood. Without sufficient levels of these chemicals, depression, anxiety and other stress-related emotional disorders can interfere with your daily life.
Why is chronic stress at work dangerous for my physical health? Prolonged stress has been shown to suppress the immune system. Stress has also been associated with minor complaints such as nausea, headache and upset stomach; more serious disorders such as insomnia and cardiovascular disease are linked to stress, as well.
What can I do to counteract workplace stress? In order to cope with any amount of stress, you need to be as healthy as possible. Make sure you get plenty of exercise and maintain a nutritious, balanced diet. Stick to a regular sleep schedule, and find time to spend doing something relaxing that you enjoy.
Talking with friends and family and maintaining a healthy social life is also important to improving your ability to cope with stress. If your job is so stressful that you can no longer cope, it may be time to consider a change. But before you take this step, you should talk with a therapist experienced in stress disorders.
One of the most popular and effective methods of dealing with stress is meditation. Meditation has been used for thousands of years to focus the mind, banish negative thoughts, and develop a heightened sense of self-awareness. People who spend time meditating are better able to cope with work stress related problems.
- No categories