How To Handle Pressure From Work (With Practical Tips)

Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 3 March 2023

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Work pressure is an unavoidable aspect of the modern-day work experience. With the right stress management tools and techniques, you can overcome the experience of feeling overwhelmed at work. Knowing how to manage stress and work pressure can help enhance your work-life balance and improve your well-being. In this article, we discuss how to handle pressure from work and share some tips to help you manage your professional life.

How to handle pressure from work

Learning how to handle pressure from work can be essential for your professional and personal success. Here are some ways in which you can manage your work pressure and stress more effectively:

1. Set rules

The modern-day work culture and competition can make it challenging to keep your personal and professional life separate. This is why setting clear rules is crucial to your overall well-being, as it can help you follow a fixed daily routine and know exactly what to do or not do at a given time. For instance, you may want to block certain websites during your work hours, check emails once a day or keep your phone in silent mode during work.

These practices can also enable a healthy work-life balance by allowing you time for other essential things, such as personal hobbies and relaxation or spending time with loved ones.

2. Rest adequately

Your mind and body need adequate time to rest and relax after a stressful workday or workweek. So make sure you are having enough sleep every day. It is also important to take some time over the weekend for leisure activities, such as swimming, bicycling, skating, skiing, painting, reading, watching movies or getting a bubble bath. When you have a long weekend or holiday, you can consider taking a vacation. These small practices can effectively ensure a more focused work approach without letting work pressure and challenges affect you.

3. Develop healthy responses

Developing healthy and positive responses to high-pressure situations can help you solve a problem patiently and calmly. This might mean reacting appropriately to a tight deadline, unforeseen obstacle or a mistake made by your colleague. This helps to make you a more professional and respected employee. Maintaining your calm even during times of stress can also be beneficial to your health.

4. Prioritise urgent tasks

Mismanagement, delays and work pressure can also arise from poor organisational and prioritisation practices. Assessing your work responsibilities and prioritising them according to their order of importance and urgency can help you work more efficiently. Following this approach, you can give your undivided attention to the current task without worrying about the deadline for an upcoming project.

For example, if you think you are more focused and efficient in the first half of the day, try to complete all critical tasks within that period. You can perform other tasks like replying to emails or participating in meetings during the second half after completing the most pressing work responsibilities.

Related: How To Practise Self-Discipline In The Workplace

5. Learn and practise time management

Another crucial aspect of managing work pressure is to allocate your time efficiently to all relevant tasks. Successful professionals follow efficient time management practices and ensure they use their time to achieve their goals, become more productive at work and reduce stress. Mastering this skill can also help you show your sincerity, focus and discipline, which can help you get a promotion and advance your career. Time management can also help you live a more fulfilling life, as you can focus on personal chores and responsibilities better.

Read More: Time Management Skills: Definition And Examples

6. Practise mindfulness

You can focus on long-term career goals instead of worrying too much about temporary problems when you stay mindful. Being mindful can also help you consider different perspectives and look for alternate ways of handling any challenging situation. There are various mindfulness activities you can perform, such as yoga, meditation or listening to healing music that can take away the overwhelming effects of stress and allow you to experience the situation for what it is. Mindfulness can also increase your present awareness and help overcome any negative thoughts that harm your functional capacity.

Related: How To Keep A Positive Attitude: A Complete Guide

7. Seek support

If you feel that your mental or physical health is under stress and you are experiencing a total loss of energy, seek the support of your loved ones, trusted colleagues or your manager. Consider asking for help to complete an overwhelming task or ask for more time from your manager. If necessary, take a quick break to rejuvenate yourself. You can also seek support by delegating some of your tasks to other employees. If you think you require professional help, look for experts, such as a therapist, who can support your recovery.

Related: What Is A Sabbatical Leave From Work?

8. Maintain a journal

Writing a journal regularly can be very effective, especially in situations where you feel out of control, confused or overwhelmed. Regularly writing about your problems at work and how you want to solve them can help you express your thoughts without getting overwhelmed by them. Journaling can also help you be more mindful of your thoughts and feelings and develop healthy stress responses.

9. Ask your manager for support

Talking to your immediate supervisor or mentor can help you develop effective ways to manage stress. Consider having an open conversation with your employer or immediate manager and sharing how you require their support in managing your work schedules and responsibilities more efficiently. This can also help both of you set realistic and healthy expectations for each other. You can discuss specific ways to change your work environment, schedules or responsibilities to help you manage stress better. This discussion can also be an opportunity for you to request a short leave or sabbatical from work if required.

Related: Top 10 Management Challenges And How To Overcome Them

Tips for handling work pressure

Here are some more practical tips for handling work pressure:

  • Avoid morning stress: Starting your day right can positively affect your mood and workflow for the entire day, so ensure that you start well and avoid morning stress. One way to do this is by not checking your work emails or picking up calls until you reach your workplace or not scheduling long meetings very early in the morning.

  • Understand expectations: You can become highly stressed if you do not know the job requirements or work expectations that the employer has from you. Knowing and understanding expectations in a transparent manner can help you perform tasks timely and avoid unnecessary stress.

  • Avoid conflict: Workplaces conflicts are usually unavoidable, as disagreements can be common when working in a team. Controlling your responses during a conflict and navigating such situations peacefully while consciously avoiding conflict can help you have a more fulfilling work experience.

  • Stay organised: Organising your tasks and allocating sufficient time for each job can help you get more productive and avoid workplace stress. One way to do so is through thorough planning, as it can also ensure that you efficiently perform the tasks allocated to you.

  • Be comfortable: Sometimes the stress you experience may not be emotional but physical, as the environment or your work setup may not be comfortable for you to perform your best. Ensure that you have a comfortable space to work and fix anything that is not comfortable, such as a broken chair or inadequate lighting.

  • Focus on one task at a time: Focusing on one assignment can also boost your efficiency. To improve your productivity and focus, avoid multi-tasking and do one thing at a time.

  • Stay active during breaks: Go for short walks during lunch or evening breaks and try to stay active. Walking can help reduce your stress levels and give you a break from your work environment.

  • Regulate perfectionist tendencies: Some people take avoidable stress in the pursuit of perfectionism. If you are one of them, be aware of your behaviour and personality and allow yourself to make mistakes.

  • Listen to music: Many professionals choose to listen to music while working, as it helps them reduce distractions and increase focus. Listening to pleasant and soothing music can also reduce your overall stress levels and help you relax and recover after a long workday.

  • Eat on time and stay hydrated: Eat healthy meals and snacks on time, even when you have work pressure. Also, stay hydrated and keep drinking water throughout the day.

Related: 7 Important Tips For Getting Back To Work (With How To)

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