Do you know how to reduce stress at work?
This question sounds obvious, but when I think back on my career learning how to reduce stress wasn’t something I learnt at school and was certainly never covered in any company induction program.
In fact, I don’t think it was until as a young PR consultant having been given a project far bigger than I could manage that I started desperately seeking guidance on how to reduce stress, rather than be crippled by it.
At the time it seemed no matter how hard and long I worked I just couldn’t make head way on this project. At night I’d toss and turn, worrying about what I hadn’t yet done and what might still go wrong. By the time I got into the office I was an exhausted, nervous wreck.
As hard as I tried, I just couldn’t stop thinking about my work. Then I discovered the “how to reduce stress” secret.
How To Reduce Stress In One Easy Step
You might recall in our earlier blogs we talked about the fact that evolution programmed us with a strong negativity bias that causes us to dwell on what’s going wrong and seek out ways to fix it. This is great when we’re facing a sabre tooth tiger, but it’s not so useful when we’re facing a looming deadline at work.
Our brains are programmed so that when we dwell on negativity, we can’t see the big picture and think clearly, so instead we selectively call to mind more and more negative thoughts creating a downward spiral of despair and multiplying our pessimism exponentially. It’s one of the WORST ways to try and reduce stress.
The problem is rumination usually causes us to become stuck in a rut of endless questions and fans the flames of negativity, leaving us overwhelmed and demoralized. The trick is to find something that positively distracts us by demanding our full attention so that we can take our minds off our troubles and reduce stress in the process.
In today’s new episode of ChelleMcQuaid TV, I’ll show you a practical way to reduce stress once and for all by breaking the grip of rumination in one easy step.
Click here for the tweetable – “The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another – William James” @chellemcquaid
Ready to reduce stress once and for all?
To help your reduce stress at work ask yourself “What can I do to get my mind off my troubles?” and brainstorm a list of positive distractions. This might include things you already do, as well as new activities you’d like to try in good and bad weather, at work, at home, or on the road.
Make sure these are truly positive distractions that will reduce stress and don’t involve things like complaining to a friend, eating lots of sugar or carbs or unhealthy escapes from reality like drinking yourself silly.
Share your list to reduce stress below. Remember to be as specific as possible in your comment as your insights and experience helps us all.
Thanks for tuning in!
P.S. Have you signed up for my new online training program to help you become a workplace superstar? There’s a special introductory price just for you but hurry this is only available until December 20th, 2012.