Stress in the workplace is a complex experience for both employers and employees. Work stress is linked to high absenteeism and increased staff turnover. Work Stress is also connected to more workplace injuries and industrial unrest. To use successful stress relief and stress management techniques are very important for all.
3 STEPS TO KNOW IF HAVE NEGATIVE WORK STRESS
But how do you really know as an individual if you are experiencing work stress? How do you determine this? Here is a simple but powerful 3 step test to help you recognize whether you are experiencing negative work stress. Grab a paper and pen and get ready to take this test. On the paper draw two columns. Name the column on the left hand side words and the column on the right hand side feelings.
STEP 1 WITH YOUR DESCRIPTIVE WORK WORDS
Step 1 in determining whether your stress is work related is to consider the words you use when describing your job. For the next 3 minutes, write down the words you would use to describe your job or work in the left column. Do not think too much about what you are about to write. Just quickly write as many descriptive words as you can think of.
WHAT DID YOU FIND OUT ABOUT YOUR WORK?
Did you use words like drudgery, toil, burden, slavery, slogging and other such words to describe your working life? These are very negative descriptions of your working experience and are very stressful words. Compare these words to other examples of positive words that can be used to describe your work. Words like endeavor, challenge, commitment, undertaking, assignment, production and performance. Just from these words alone you are able to gain an understanding as to whether your job is a positive or negative experience for you right now.
STEP 2 WITH YOUR FEELINGS ABOUT WORK
Step 2 in deciding whether you are stressing at work is to explore your feelings about the words you wrote down in step 1 to describe your job. Your own words when linked to your emotions and how you feel are extremely important indicators of work stress. Look closely at your word list that you have written down. Next to each of those words write a word or 2 to describe how you feel in the right column. Once again, do not think about it simply write those words that enter your head.
WHAT DID YOU DISCOVER ABOUT YOUR FEELINGS?
If your list contains many negative words then you will most likely have written about having feelings of anxiety, stress, frustration, trepidation, strain, pressure and more. These words about how you feel are really emotive and important for you in determining if you are stressed out in your job.
STEP 3 IN COMBINING WORDS AND FEELINGS
Step 3 is to have a look again at your list of work related words and your emotional words about your feelings in both columns. If the words about your work are predominantly negative and your emotional words are also negative, then you are certainly experiencing negative work or job stress. The more negative your words are, then the more likely you are to hate your work. The more you hate your job, then the more work stress you will often experience.
WORK STRESS MANAGEMENT AND STRESS RELIEF
Now this quick test is only a start and an indication for you. But if you are feeling very negative about your job then it is definitely time to consider a range of stress management and stress relief strategies to help you to reduce stress in your working environment. Life is really too short to spend it being totally stressed out at work.
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