April 18, 2012

7 Quick Ways to Relieve Stress at your Desk

Are you feeling a lot of stress at work? This might be the effect of work piling up, poor communication, procrastination, over-committing and just plain old clutter. We all are affected by stress, but we don’t always know how to relieve it. As April is stress awareness month, we wanted to provide a list of ways to relieve that everyday stress affecting everyone in a working environment. Here are seven ways you can relieve your stress at your desk:

  1. Create a Peaceful Visualization -- Picture yourself relaxed on a beach or by a warm fire and focus yourself on being present in whatever activity you choose: walking, running, swimming, painting, and knitting.
  2. Breathe Deeply – Stress creates tense shallow breathing; try taking long drawn out breaths to relieve that tension and count to 10. Doing so can be a great way to relax your muscles and clear the mind.
  3. Look Around You – Take on one thing at a time and take a break from staring at the computer screen. We try too hard to multi-task. Try tackling one project at a time, from most important and impactful to least important. You will feel better once you have those bigger projects off your plate.
  4. Give Yourself a Message – Roll out that yoga mat and do a little office yoga exercise before your next commitment. If you’re not into yoga or don’t have a mat, you can simply try letting go of muscle tension one vertebrae at a time. Concentrate on tensing one muscle and then releasing from your head to your toes.
  5. Conduct a Musical Intervention – Focus on the slow tempo of a relaxing song. Something that will calm and sooth the senses. It’s probably best to avoid “head banging music.” Try listening to music without words- this could be soothing sounds like rain or the ocean.
  6. Take a Walk – Sometimes it’s just good to take a walk. Even 5 minutes is enough to clear your head. Stretch your arms and legs so that when you get back into the office you are ready to tackle your next task.
  7. Turn the Lights Out – Turning the lights off can help calm the mind into meditation. Bright lights can be harsh on your eyes, particularly the light that comes from your computer screen. Take the time to recharge your eyes and avoid nasty migraines.

Are you feeling better? Remember that another trick to avoid stress in the first place is getting a good restful night of sleep and eating a hardy breakfast to get your day started strong. Stress is extremely unhealthy for the body and mind, and should not be ignored. If you’re ever feeling trapped with stress while sitting behind your computer, remember these quick tips to relieve your stress and get on with a more productive and satisfying work day.

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