Jan 6, 201409:56 AMLeader to Leader
with Terry Siebert
3 proven strategies for handling workplace stress
(page 1 of 2)
40%: Percentage of workers who report their job is “very or extremely stressful.” — Survey by Northwestern Mutual Life
26%: Percentage of workers who report they are “often or very often burned out or stressed by their work.” — Survey by Families and Work Institute
29%: Percentage of workers who report they feel “quite a bit or extremely stressed at work.” — Survey by Yale University
75%: Percentage of workers who believe they have more on-the-job stress than workers a generation ago. — Princeton Survey Research Associates
“Problems at work are more strongly associated with health complaints than are any other life stressor — more so than even financial problems or family problems.” — St. Paul Fire and Marine Insurance Co.
Pretty sobering statistics, to be sure. In a world where we are all being asked to do more, and to do it better and faster with fewer resources, it’s no wonder the pressure is on.
When Dale Carnegie wrote How to Stop Worrying and Start Living more than 60 years ago, he probably had no idea then how timeless his advice would be. The principles from the book are as applicable today as ever. Here are just a few:
1. Live in “day-tight compartments.”
In our technology-driven, 24/7 world, it often seems that the work monkey will never get off our back. After a crazy day at the office, we come home to find our partner just as stressed as we are. Rather than relaxing, we start going through emails that we did not have time for at work. Even when we are home with family, we are really not there. We cannot shake the monkey. The principle above is easy to articulate — often very difficult to follow. Why not at least give it a try?
When you are home — be there. When you’re at that meeting — be there. When you are on the phone with a client — be there. Do not multitask. By the way, multitasking is somewhere between ineffective and rude. As Robin Williams said in the movie Dead Poets Society, carpe diem! Notice that we are supposed to live in day-tight compartments, not stress out.