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Mental Health Awareness Week: Coping With Stress at Work

Dealing with stress at work can be a complex issue. Many professions subject their staff to lots of work pressure and it is vital for an individual to know how to cope.

Mental Health Awareness Week is upon us and presents the perfect opportunity to talk about dealing with stress at work. Running from 14th to 20th May, the initiative has been backed by dozens of celebrities and represents an issue that we at Port of Call are delighted to see given the attention that it deserves. Research has shown that two thirds of us suffer with mental health issues at some point in life, and stress management is something that should be encouraged.

So, let’s look into how to deal with stress and anxiety at work. First of all, it is essential to successfully address the work-life balance. In society, hard work is something that is often praised. Rightly so, of course, but when does working hard turn into an addiction to work?

Workaholism is a term known throughout the UK. We’ve all called a colleague a ‘workaholic’ at some point or another. Although often done so in jest, this has become a very real issue. Particularly in the UK, with research finding that we work more hours than any other nation in Europe.

Stress management is something that many people have had to address from an earlier age. In a previous Port of Call blog, we discussed how students cope with the pressures of exams, financial worries and fitting in with certain social circles by turning to alcohol. The same coping tool can be used when work is getting on top of us and our alternatives to beating stress blog points out five ways that we can cope without turning to drink.

What exactly causes stress at work? There are a variety of causes, with a few mentioned below:

  • Demands of the job itself
  • Lack of control over daily tasks
  • Insufficient support from senior staff and peers
  • Failing relationships at work
  • Change in the workplace left unaddressed

Stress management is often all about talking, whether that be through stress counselling or opening up to someone close to you. The same approach should be encouraged in the work place and what better time than on Mental Health Awareness Week to speak with your manager about what is on your mind?

Of course, if you’d like to have a conversation with somebody outside of your professional environment, our team of dedicated and understanding professionals are on hand to talk, listen and advise. Get in touch on 08000029010 today and have a chat with Port of Call. 

Why is dealing with stress at work so important?

Stress management in the workplace is vitally important, for a number of reasons. To begin with, reducing stress at work makes for a healthier and happier environment for you and the people around you.

At least one in six workers experience common mental health problems, including depression and anxiety. When broken down, it becomes apparent just how important dealing with stress at work can be.

37% of mental ill health sufferers are more likely to get into conflicts with colleagues, while 50% are potentially less patient with customers and clients.

It is actually millennials (aged between 18 and 38), as opposed to generations before them that must learn how to reduce stress at work. Over a quarter of this age bracket admitted that working through stress was expected in their jobs while a third claimed that stress made them less productive.

In a recent Port of Call Recovery Recap blog, we encouraged readers to address how to cope with stress at work.

Dealing with stress and mental health issues is critical, particularly in young adults. A recent study highlights that youngsters with depression tend to drink and/or gamble to escape negative emotions. These mental health issues can see people turn to self-medicating through alcohol, drugs, gambling, food and sex addictions. We implore you to contact our team of dedicated and understanding professionals and talk about your state of mind before reaching that point. Get in touch on 08000029010 today and have a chat with Port of Call.

Reducing work pressure: who can help?

Stress counselling in the workplace should not be understated. As a full-time employee, you spend a lot of your life in work and pressure can become dangerous if allowed to build.

If you’re reading this as a stressed employee or as a concerned employer, there are ways to combat mounting work pressure.

[accordion clicktoclose=true tag=h3][accordion-item title=”Employee” state=closed id=acchead] All too often, we hear stories of hardworking employees working through their lunch break and working late in order to meet a deadline or catch up on an increasing workload. In reality, nailing that work-life balance is of paramount importance and your family and friends outside of work shouldn’t be put second when the working day is finished. We understand there may be exceptions to this, but if your working hours are consistently having a negative impact on your health, it is time to address that balance. [/accordion-item] [accordion-item title=”Employer” state=closed id=acchead] In a recent survey, more than one in five people admitted to calling in sick at work to avoid the stress of the day ahead. Such admissions will not help in the long run and often sees a daunting workload pile up. The same survey also revealed that 30% of staff feel unable to talk openly with their manager if they were dealing with stress at work. If you are an employer, please be sure that you do not fall into this category, you can provide more help than you may realise. [/accordion-item] [/accordion]

We are delighted to see Mental Health Awareness Week addressing an ongoing issue of stress in the workplace. It is a fantastic initiative, but this is a problem that impacts people all year round and should not be brushed under the carpet. Whether you are an employee or employer, get in touch with Port of Call today. Remember, talking beats keeping your feelings bottled up every time.

About the author: Alex Molyneux

Alex is our admissions team leader. Over the last 5 years he has spoken with more than 10,000 people via our helpline and has organised over 1,000 detox and rehabilitation placements.

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