very high percentage of population is feeling stressed and fighting mental
illness. Stress at work and in social life has resulted in an increase in the
number of people suffering from psychiatric illnesses and sub-syndromes of
diseases like headache, tension and insomnia. Depression was found to be
the most common mental illness.
There is rift in social life of the urban populace. People
communicate barely in families. Personal dissatisfaction, disinterest in work,
lack of motivation, domestic problems and marital discord were major reasons
behind the mental problems.
It's been defined as:
'the adverse reaction people have to excessive pressures or other
types of demand placed on them’. Other Form of high degree of
stress is Burn Out. A burnout is a state of mental and physical
exhaustion resulting from chronic pressure to perform at the workplace. This,
combined with doubts about your competence at work, is bad stress.
According to experts, some level of stress
is good for us. As our stress levels go up, the adrenaline levels in the body
shoot up, the body gets into a state of preparedness and our performance
“But when stress goes beyond what the body and mind can handle, it causes
exertion and a breakdown. When the body is in this state almost every day, it
will break down at some point,
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JOBS WITH LOW RISK
People who are
in jobs that involve creative pursuits are better off. “They have some control
over what they are doing, unlike a marketing or sales professional whose targets
depend on other people.
JOBS WITH HIGH RISK :
marketing professionals: They have high, sometimes unrealistic targets to
achieve. Their promotions, increments, job security depend on this.
CHECKING ANXIETY LEVEL :
> If you almost always feel
the pressure to succeed?
> Feel there is more work than you
> Almost always feel irritated when
you’re at the office?
> Always feel you are achieving
less than you should?
> Feel exhausted, confused or
irritable much of the time?
> Frequently have disturbed sleep?
> Notice a change in your appetite?
> Often have aches and pains?
> Have to drag yourself to the
office on most days?
If most of them are yes. You are in
UNDERSTANDING CAUSES OF
STRESS OF YOUR EMPLOYEES :
The best way of ascertaining the cause of stress is talking to the employee.
This can prove more difficult than one would expect - a common reaction of the
employee claiming to be stressed is to flee the workplace.
STRESS LEVEL FOR
DIFFERENT EXECUTIVES : Usually higher is the post
higher is the stress
> TOP LEVEL EXECUTIVES : Are
accountable for the company’s overall performance are in the line of
> SENIOR / MIDDLE LEVEL OFFICERS :
Are under pressure to achieve targets but have less control over activating
logistics have to keep seniors and juniors happy
> FIELD / JUNIOR STAFF : Job stress
is limited to efficiently finishing tasks
TYPE OF STRESS AND
>If the stress is
caused by genuine overwork, you should usually try to identify ways to
reduce that workload, for example by reassigning duties on a temporary or
permanent basis or providing additional resources. Any decision to re-assign
part of an employee’s duties must be taken in consultation with the
>If the problem is bad working
relationships then steps should be taken to try to resolve those
relationship issues, for example through workplace counseling or some form
>If the stress is due to personal
issues, it might be appropriate to consider allowing a short period of
unpaid leave or a temporary period of flexible working.
WAY OUT :
> Leaving your job is of course the last
option, but it’s hardly a practical one. Also, you cannot change people, so
the only way out is to tackle the situation and meet it head-on.
The effort to avoid a burnout has to be your own. Situations will not change
on their own (your work responsibilities will not decrease, nor will your
boss or colleagues suddenly turn into great human beings). So all you can do
is change your own attitude towards stress. Do not let work rule your life
> Accept that you too can be wrong
sometimes. Don’t take the missing of a deadline or target as a failure.
> Take short breaks from office with
your family or alone to rejuvenate yourself and remind yourself that there
are other things as important as your career.
> Try and develop an attitude of
positive thinking. Let go of things rather than constantly brood about
> Try and control your anger. Rage
> Too many things to do and not enough
time? If you are constantly struggling to effectively fit in too many things
in your routine, then start prioritizing tasks and keep a to-do list handy.
That way you can keep clutter (tasks that are not as important) from
entering your life, making you feel less pressured.
> Learn to effectively delegate work,
and forewarn yourself that you may not be able to meet all your targets.
That way, you will not suffer stress when it happens.
> One of the illusions people have is
that putting in more hours will make them more productive. But doing that
will only tire you out and make you sick, and when you are sick, everything
becomes more difficult.
> Focus on your strengths and turn
stressful situations into learning experiences.
Finally, also look for better opportunities – a
job that you might like, that will have less pressure, or a job that has better
* Dr Prafulla Ranjan is a qualified banker with more than 20
years of banking experience and has Ph.D. in Management to his credit. He
is Dy Director in Institute of Environment and Management Lucknow
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