Fight Or Flight: A Manager’s Guide To Coping With Stress

Stress in the workplace is common. The vast majority of us work too much and relax too little. And, it’s not unusual for that to take its toll at some stage. Hence why endless articles inform managers how to reduce stress for their colleagues.

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But, what happens when managers are stressed? After all, they have more pressure on their shoulders than anyone. As such, they’re often fuelled by nervous energy and a lack of sleep. What’s more, there’s no one up high to ease the burden. The stresses are continual and without relief. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. If you think you fall into the stressed manager category, it’s time you took these steps to help yourself.

Lighten the load

There’s no doubt the workload is the most stressful thing for managers. If your employees are stressed from the pressure, how do they think you feel? You’re the first in the office and the last to leave. And, your to-do list is always a few pages long. But, you can take steps to lighten your load. Of course, you may think you already do that when you delegate tasks at the start of the workday, but that doesn’t work. After all, you then add the responsibility of overseeing to your list. Instead, we’re talking about outsourcing. If you aren’t already doing this, you should. Do you spend large portions of your day dealing with computer issues? Hand the job to an IT company like Houk Consulting who can take care of it for you. Do you waste hours on accounts? Hire an outside accountant to take over. These may seem like small things, but knowing you don’t have to think about them anymore could be just the relief you need.

Know when to draw a line under your workday

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Many managers also struggle to draw a line under their workdays. From the moment you started your own business, there’s a chance you’ve been working well over 9-5. And, in the beginning, that was probably essential. But, keeping that up is a sure way to burn yourself out. And, that’s not going to help anyone. So, set an endpoint for your days and stick to it. For the next weeks, aim to be out of the office by seven. You won’t believe how much better you’ll feel for it.

Praise yourself for work well done

Being a manager is also a pretty thankless task. There’s no one higher to tell you you’ve done a good job. And, that can boost stress levels no end. After all, work teams report loss of morale and work effort when they don’t receive praise. And, why would you be any different? So, next time you finish a big project, take the time to praise yourself. It may be that you just give yourself a metaphorical pat on the shoulder. Or, perhaps you go all out and buy yourself something nice. This small recognition is sure to ease you more than you’d think.

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