II am seeing more and more clients who are feeling anxious, having sleepless nights worrying about going to work the next day and generally doubting that they can cope. This leads to frustration, irritability and snapping at others – at home as well as at work – feeling that they one nerve left and
everyone is getting on it. Above all, they have zero job satisfaction – that no matter how hard they work they never have a sense of achievement and constantly worry that they will make a mistake and lose their job. This is workplace stress.
Workplace stress rarely affects those laidback people who take the view that they can only do what they can do and if the boss doesn’t like it, well, that’s tough. It affects the conscientious ones who always want to do their best, who take pride in their work and always go the extra mile with job
satisfaction being a big part of their self value. The feeling of not being able to achieve starts to eat away at their self esteem and confidence, making them feel more and more anxious as they start to feel out of control.
Work serves different aspects in our lives – money of course, socialisation with colleagues and customers but also a sense of satisfaction that we have done a good job. Unfortunately employees are rarely praised and often blamed when they don’t come up to expectations. But what happens when we don’t achieve what we feel is expected of us? This could be because the expectations of the boss are unreasonably high or maybe we put these expectations on ourselves. Often workplace stress is the outcome of these internal expectations of what we ‘should’ be achieving.
We often feel that if we are given a piece of work to do then there is an expectation that we must be able to finish it all even though it can not be known in advance how complicated that work may be or how long it could take to complete.
If this is all sounding familiar to you – then talk to your manager who may not have realised how you are struggling. There may be a way to manage the workload in a better way or to pass some of the work to a colleague.
Remember to have time to switch off – it is a job not a way of life! Are you logging on when you get up in the morning to try to get ahead of the day? You answer an email and another employee, also in their pyjamas, answers! So you are no further forward but you have now started work. Make sure to
factor some fun into your day and have time away from your phone and the internet so that you can switch off. It is called a work life balance for a reason – don’t let work knock you off kilter.
Above all, remember that however much you earn, if you are constantly thinking about work or doing work, then it is not a good hourly rate.