Guest post by Stephen Borgman.
The American Psychological Association conducted a study in 2011 of stress in the workplace:
-more than 1/3 of workers said they typically feel stressed our or tense during their work day
-64% said that their employers had made cuts due to the recession
According to worldwide studies done in past years:
- the 2002 Aventis Healthcare Survey in Canada finds fifty-one percent of employees experiencing much stress at work, with twenty-five percent of them falling physically ill due to workplace stress
- In Japan, a fatal combination of apoplexy, high blood pressure, and stress is recognized as “Karoshi” or death from overwork
Think about yourself, a typical member of the Biz Blogging Buzz community.
I’m guessing you work very hard. You either work full-time on your online business; or, like, me, you may be working 1 or 1.5 jobs while also working your part-time business.
You may be a full-time business owner. But that just means you have more responsibility!
Here are Some Ways to Beat Work Related Stress
1. Recognize the warning signs
Here’s a stress quiz to assess your own stress levels.
2. Give Yourself White Space
Scott Case, Chief Executive, Startup American Partnership, gives us pointers in this video on Entrepreneur magazine’s article about surviving startup stress.
White space, quite simply, means doing nothing related to your work.
Here are some things you can do during your work day (if you own your own business), or on your lunch break (if you’re an employee)
- Go for a walk
- Play ping pong
- Watch some television
3. Use the Pareto Principle
You all know this idea. Pareto told us that 80 percent of our results come from 20 percent of our efforts. What are the critical success factors in your business that account for 80% of your results? List out everything you do, then multiply x.20. those are the number of activities you should end up with. Then figure out how you can outsource or eliminate the rest of the activities on the list. You may also be able to combine them.
Practice Zero Based Thinking
One way you can practice the Pareto Principle is to practice zero based thinking.
Think about different activities in your work or business. As you consider those components, say to yourself, “If I had it to do all over again, would I be engaging in this activity?”
If not, cross that activity off your list. (Or delegate it).
4. Don’t Just Agonize Over Problems: Focus on Solutions
You have permission to acknowledge your problems. And why not even assign yourself some agonizing time?
I’ve told counseling clients (and myself), when overcome with worry, to set a “worry time” appointment on my calendar: daily if, I need to.
During that worry time, we can write down all our worries.
But then it’s time to write out some solutions.
Here are some of my favorite problem-solving questions that Anthony Robbins has posed:
- What’s great about this problem?
- What is not ideal yet?
- What am I willing to do to make it the way I want it?
- What am I willing to no longer do to make it the way I want it?
- How can I enjoy the process while I do what is necessary to make it the way I want it?
5. Hire a Business Coach
If you’re struggling with WordPress, Just Ask Kim!
If you’re struggling with other aspects of your business, find a trusted business coach and get some input!
You don’t have to go through this work related stress alone.
6. Build Your Community
Clint Butler recently wrote about the importance of business partners, both formal and informal. We all know about the power of the Mastermind group.
Are you reaching out to others in the You Can Do It Online Training community?
Are you seeking to give more than you receive? (Hint: Chris Brogan is onto something when he recommends we share 80% and promote ourselves 20%).
Don’t just network online. There’s an offline world as well! Get together with like minded entrepreneurs in your area for support and mutual advice.
This is one of the simplest, yet most neglected aspects of stress busters.
John Jantch of Duct Tape Marketing designed a standing work station so that he can work while walking on his treadmill!
Cliff Ravenscraft, Pat Flynn, and Mark Mason, all respected internet marketers, compete with each other on Fit Bit, a little piece of equipment that monitors your footsteps during the day and posts it online.
Start really small. Just walk a few yards. Just do a few situps. Then increase your amount slowly the next day, and the next. Before you know it, you’ll be enjoying the stress reducing benefits of exercise.
I’ll include meditation under exercise. Try some yoga as well.
Eat right! Exercise and nutrition are the two best ways to reduce your stress.
Lose It is the best free way I’ve found to drop 13 pounds over the last year. It’s available both on the web and as an app. And it’s free!
Load up on those fruits and vegetables. And while you’re at it, watch the movie, Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead. That’s what got me on the road to daily green smoothies!
9. Consider Going to A Counselor
Finally, I’m biased. As a professional counselor, I urge you to seek out confidential help when Hurricane Sandy meets up with a cold front to create a Frankenstorm of stress in your life.
Check the back of your healthcare insurance card. Call the 800 number for Behavioral Health/Mental Health. And get started.
When it’s all said and done…consider these words from author Steve Maraboli
“I promise you nothing is as chaotic as it seems. Nothing is worth your health. Nothing is worth poisoning yourself into stress, anxiety, and fear.”This list is only the beginning. What solutions have you discovered to beat work related stress? – Stephen Borgman