8 Stress-Busting Tips for Overworked Employees

Today’s overworked employees are under more stress than ever. Unfortunately, a mountain of studies link stress with severe health problems, productivity drops and even premature death. These stress-busting tips from Brigid Ashwood for Wired will help you feel more at ease while on the job.

  1. Stay off social media. Ashwood calls Facebook out in particular as a “deep pool of negativity and stress.” Instead, use one of the many third-party apps on the market to post to Facebook without logging in.
  2. Gravitate toward energy givers. Some people are energy vampires, sucking your positivity away without a care. Others are energy givers, and being in their presence lifts your spirits. Do your best to find these mood-lifters in person; in a pinch, follow funny people online instead. (Ashwood recommends George Takei and Myles Pinkney.)
  3. Turn off your television. TV is awash in negativity. If you like working with background noise, try music, podcasts or audio books instead.
  4. Take care of yourself. Help your body fight stress by taking care of it. Stay hydrated, cut back on caffeine, eat a nutritious diet, get a full night’s rest and exercise.
  5. Have a “sick” day. Use this day to rest and recharge as you please. “While too much TV or the wrong kind can be bad for you, for some of us, a day off to watch our favorite geeky movie franchise or television show is just what we need,” writes Ashwood.
  6. Set limits. If you’re already feeling stressed, Ashwood recommends turning down new projects and favors for a set time frame — two or three months, perhaps — so you can get caught up.
  7. Keep your friends in the loop. Some people blow off steam by venting their frustrations to friends. This can add to your stress levels. Ashwood puts it nicely: “Tell your friend that while you respect their need to upload, you are not a compatible drive for this information.”
  8. Proactively choose positivity. This “fake-it-till-you-make-it” approach forces you to give others the benefit of the doubt and can also help fight your stress.

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