Watching the news has never been for the light of heart, over the past few weeks though, it has been much more difficult than usual. How much stress recent headlines can cause is variable from person to person. Some people may not be affected at all, while others can become deeply affected to the point where normal day-to-day tasks can become nearly impossible.
As an employer, a manager, an HR professional or just a caring colleague, there are things we can all do to help the folks around us deal with stress of any kind. Here are 5 tips for how you can help those working for and with you, deal with stress.
1. Stop talking and start listening
When someone is feeling stressed or overwhelmed the last thing they need is a list of things they should be doing to make them feel better. Often times, what people need is just an avenue through which they can voice their stress and feel like the ear on the other end is really hearing them. A few tips on how to be a good listener: turn your phone to silent, give the person 100% of your attention and ask questions that demonstrate you’re listening and you care.
2. Laughter really is the best medicine
Finding time to smile or give a chuckle even if it’s just for a few minutes can make a world of difference. Aside from benefits like improved immunity, the fact that you burn calories doing it, and that it can help with blood sugar levels, laughing just makes you feel good.
3. Change of scenery
The reality is that sometimes work can just get monotonous. Being in the same workplace for more than 8 hours a day, surrounded by the same 4 walls can be tough. Take your next meeting outside, you could even make it a walking meeting. A change in venue can go a long way in getting people to think differently and adjust people’s attitudes.
4. Implement some down time
Find the time to get colleagues together for something other than a meeting or work. Whether it’s rock climbing, bowling or a yoga session, getting people together for something other than work can break up the monotony of work and be a stress relieving activity. This time spent together also helps colleagues build stronger relationships with one another.
5. Demonstrate gratitude
Reminding someone of how grateful you are that they are here to help can make someone’s entire day. Most people work hard and give their best effort every day, but few people actually hear how grateful their colleagues are for them. Try it out and watch the reaction you get.