Stress Management & Work Performance

Jonathan Bollag, Owner and FounderLeave a Comment

Being passed up for that latest promotion? Want to improve your performance at work and get ahead? Here are some tips on how to manage stress and improve your performance at work, giving you an edge on the competition.

Stress Management Techniques

Image courtesy of Ambro / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Ambro / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

1. Meditation

Something as simple as a 15-minute meditation session per day can greatly improve your stress level.  Find some quite time for yourself concentrating on lowering your heart rate while focusing on slowing your breathing within a state of relaxation and calmness. A 15 minute meditation session per-day will help you focus while lowering your stress level.

2. Yoga

Yoga practice has become prevalent and has been at the forefront of stress reduction and relaxation techniques in American culture for sometime now. It has proven to be both effective in relaxing the mind and strengthening the body. The ancient practice of Yoga has become widespread throughout the world. It has become extremely popular in the United States and is used as a tool for relaxation, stress reduction, the gain of flexibility in the body, and the general improvement of the mind, body and soul. Yoga can also greatly improve your functionality in and out of the workplace, with no drawbacks or negative effects. Yoga practice has been used to obtain the goal of permanent peace for thousands of years and a 30 to 60 minute session three days a week will allow you to draw on the attained benefits during stressful work periods. This aids in increased performance and anxiety reduction, increasing work activity and efficiency. Yoga is a fantastic tool that has made a world of difference in people’s lives, and not enough can be said for the positive effects of this practice 

3. Tai Chi

Tai Chi is a hard and soft internal martial art generally practiced for its health benefits. This practice has been known to reduce stress and anxiety levels while improving cortisol levels and slowing heart rates. These benefits can greatly help to improve job performance by controlling work stress levels. Tai Chi has also been shown to improve symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) during sessions. The benefits of Tai Chi can also go beyond stress reduction and improved cognitive focus by positively affecting many physical symptoms of disease and other physical ailments. 

4. Biofeedback  

The idea of Biofeedback is to take control of your bodily physical symptoms, learning to control stress related symptoms through the mind by lowering your heart rate, blood pressure, and skin temperature. Biofeedback promotes general relaxation at times of stress.  A Biofeedback session consists of electrodes that are attached to one’s skin. Signals are sent to a monitor that displays a representation of your heart rate, blood pressure, breathing, skin temperature, sweat, or muscle activity. With this information, a clinician attempts to help you control these bodily functions through relaxation techniques such as:

  • Guided Imagery-focusing on specific images to promote relaxation
  • Mindfulness Meditation-the releasing of negative emotion through focused thought
  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation– The tightening and releasing of muscle groups

Workplace stress can surface in many different ways. Biofeedback can help manage occupational related stress; not only aiding in stress management after hours, but also providing you with the tools to control stress and the symptoms of occupational overload during work hours. Biofeedback is also used to control migraine headaches, chronic pain, irregular heartbeat, and asthma.

5. Get Proper Sleep

Sleep deprivation can cause major issues such as cognitive and functional impairment, physical and mental deterioration, mental disturbances, and lack of work performance. Though the amount of sleep one needs varies, it is vitally important to get a good nights rest. The amount of sleep one needs can be between six and eight hours per night. The usual amount of sleep one needs for a full nights rest and cognitive recuperation is eight hours.

6. Improve Your Physical Fitness

Physical exercise is one of the most important and effective tools in improving work performance, brain cognition and avoiding fatigue and burnout.  In fact, studies have shown that physical activity such as weight training and simple walks can improve the negative symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease.  In addition to cognitive function improvement, physical fitness is known to provide a feeling of well-being, longevity, cardiovascular improvement and disease prevention.

Stimulate Your Brain

There are many ways to improve brain stimulation. One way that has become popular in modern society is the use of brain games. Though a simple technique, the use of games such as Sudoku, solitaire and crossword puzzles can keep you sharp as studies have shown that such brain exercises can improve cognitive function and performance.

Improve Your Diet

Eating a balance diet can have a great effect on cognitive and memory function as well as mood and daily longevity.  Including a high protein diet with low glycemic carbohydrates, Omega-3 Fatty Acids and Antioxidants is extremely beneficial. As glucose is an energy source for the brain, splitting your daily food intake into five smaller meals as opposed to three larger meals can help cognitive function, as smaller meals prevents drops in blood glucose.

To access a database of low to high glycemic indexed foods visit www.glycemicindex.com . This website has over 1,600 entries, and is a searchable database by the names of foods and glycemic load. This is a wonderful resource with great ease-of-use provided by The University of Sydney.

 

 

Leave a Reply