Workplace changes: five ways to reduce their stressful impact
Don’t stress out about stressing out: your reaction to stress has a greater impact on your health and success than the stress itself. If you believe stress kills you, it will.
Change is an unavoidable constant in our work lives. Sometimes it’s within our control, but most often it’s not.
Fortunately, there are ways to adapt to change and even to take advantage of it.
1. Find the humour in the situation: trying to find a funny moment during an otherwise unfunny situation can be a fantastic way to create the levity needed to see a vexing problem from a new perspective. It can help others feel better as well.
2. Talk about problems more than feelings: call out your anxiety or your anger at the outset of a disorienting change so that you are aware of how it might distort your thinking or disrupt your relationships. Then look for practical advice about what to do next.
3. Don’t stress out about stressing out: your reaction to stress has a greater impact on your health and success than the stress itself. If you believe stress kills you, it will. When you start to feel stressed, ask yourself what your stress is trying to help you accomplish. Stress can be a good thing – if you choose to see it that way.
4. Focus on your values instead of your fears: remind yourself what’s important to you in life. Reflecting on a personal value helps you rise above the immediate threat and makes you realise that your personal identity can’t be compromised by one challenging situation.
5. Accept the past, but fight for the future: even though we are never free from change, we are always free to decide how we respond to it. So choose to accept the fact that change happens, and employ your freedom to decide what to do next. – (Copyright Harvard Business Review 2016)
Previously published in The Irish Times.
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