Presence with Purpose - Handling Job Stress
Presence with Purpose - Center for Inner Healing & Personal Growth

It would be nice to simply say, "Take the day off, and go to the beach"! Wouldn't that be ideal?  The fact is, you may be able to do that, but not right this minute. Right now, you need something quick, easy, and effective don't you?
Well, you can start right here!  One of the most beneficial practices of reducing stress is deep breathing. Did you know that when you breathe in from your nose, and out through your mouth, filling your lungs, you create energy and oxygen flow? Deep breathing releases tension which consequently helps you to relax. After identifying your source of stress, you can pause for a moment, close your office door, or find a quiet place, and Brrreathe!! Take five or ten minutes, clear your head, close your eyes, relax your shoulders, release tension in your back, and breathe deeply! Try it! It works! 
Another useful tool is that of time management. So you have a deadline to meet, and you are overwhelmed? Let me suggest that you try not to build Rome overnight. When you look at the onslaught of demands you are facing, it may be a good idea, to break them down into mini-tasks. Start with the easiest first, the one that you can relatively get done quickly, then systematically approach each one, one step at a time.

Handling stress sometimes means you have to come face to face with an issue or individual. May I make a suggestion? Sometimes you just have to confront. Be clear that there is a difference between confrontation and being combative. Often times when there is a pressing issue that deserves immediate attention, you may not be able to just gloss over it. Whether it's your manager, colleague, or co-worker, decide ahead of time that you will speak without offending, and listen without defending. You will keep the conversation central to the issue. You will be open for solutions, but most importantly, you want to be a part of the solution, and not worsen the problem. Have your notes with you so that you can stay on point, and don't forget to BREATHE!

Another way to handle job stress is to make sure you take all scheduled breaks and lunch. If you happen to have a job where you don't take breaks, then you will have to practice a technique I call, the Peace Pause. You will need to learn how to pause out to stay in a peaceful place. A peace pause is a space you create in your mind to which you go when you sense you are going to be in a stressful place. You make that happen the moment you make a statement of intent. Such as, "I am in control of my own thoughts and actions. I choose to remain peaceful and calm." If you can think about what that place looks and feels like to you, where you are calm and peaceful, then, with practice, you will learn how to get there in a moment's notice. That's the place where you want to go in your mind's eye.

Pay attention to symptoms of job-related stress:

1. Work overload
2. Longer than normal work hours
3. Disorganization
4. Lack of concenration
5. Poor appetite
6. Tendency to become irrational
7. Failing to remember important matters
These tips are just to get you started. As time permits, I will post more useful techniques to help you cope with job stress.