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Managing & Reducing Stress
Stress is an everyday fact of life. When you have too much stress, or it lasts too long, it can be harmful. At work, unmanaged stress can lead to illness or injury, low productivity, and unsafe acts. But not all stress is bad. The best level of stress is that amount which improves a person’s performance without causing harmful side effects.
You can manage stress and make it a more positive force in your life when you identify your stressors, understand them, and take charge of the stress by relieving or preventing it. Using alcohol or drugs will not help you manage your stressors. In some cases, it can add to your stress. In any stressful situation, you have choices. You can:
Accept it – Some things are out of your control and all you can do is accept them and learn from them. Seek helpful advice or support from friends or coworkers.
Avoid it – Stay away from recurring situations or sources of constant frustration. Remove yourself from the situation or rearrange your surroundings. For time related stress, plan ahead.
Alter it – Communicate your feelings to your employer or supervisor. Change your feelings or ask someone else to change their behavior. Ask for help with your job or take advantage of your company’s Employee Assistance Program.
Adapt to it – Learn to cope with the situation or look at it as an opportunity. Focus on the positive things in your life. Try to make time for the activities you enjoy. Maintain a healthy lifestyle including exercise, meditation, and a balanced diet.
It is important for employers, supervisors, loss control personnel, and workers to recognize stressful jobs, situations, and signs of stress in themselves or in their coworkers before accidents, injuries, or violent incidences occur.